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Iceland's economy continues to recover from the
financial crisis but still has a long way to go says OECD
Iceland's economy continues to
recover from the financial crisis but still has a long way to go according to a
report today from the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation
and Development (OECD).
The report says output
has finally stabilised following the severe recession, but real GDP (centred
average) lingers 11% below its peak in the first quarter of 2008, which was well
above sustainable levels.
This decline was one of the largest in the OECD and the largest in
Iceland in recent decades. Domestic demand has levelled off, but a consumption and business
investment-led recovery is
projected to gather momentum over the next two years, lifting economic growth to
3% by 2012.
The main uncertainty to the outlook concerns the timing of large investment
projects, which has
increased following the recent vote against the Icesave agreement on April 9,
2011 with the UK and the Netherlands in respect of compensation claimed for
bailing out depositors of the failed online bank.
Today's report says the government
has made good progress in cutting the large budget deficit left by the financial
crisis, but much consolidation is still required to put public finances on a
sustainable path. The general government budget deficit (excluding one-off
transactions) fell by 3½ per cent of GDP to 6½ per cent in 2010 (7.8% of GDP
including the cost of called loan guarantees) and a similar decline is projected
The government plans to achieve a
primary budget surplus of at least 3% of GDP in 2013 and to increase it
gradually in the following years.