Greece: GDP growth loses notable steam in Q3
Economic growth lost steam in the third quarter, with GDP expanding 13.4% on an annual basis, down from Q2’s 16.6% growth. That said, the expansion remained robust, benefiting from a strong external sector and supported by a low base effect.
Domestically, private consumption increased 8.6% in the third quarter, which was below the second quarter’s 13.1% expansion. Government spending growth, meanwhile, ticked up to 5.7% in Q3 (Q2: +5.6% yoy), while fixed investment growth came in at 18.1%, up from the 17.7% expansion recorded in the previous quarter and logging the best result since Q2 2018.
On the external front, growth in exports of goods and services sped up to 48.6% year-on-year in Q3 (Q2: +26.3% yoy), as the reopening of borders and easing of Covid-19 restrictions resulted in a spike in tourism activity during the summer season. Conversely, growth in imports of goods and services waned to 21.7% in Q3 (Q2: +23.7% yoy).
On a seasonally-adjusted quarter-on-quarter basis, economic growth gained steam in Q3, rising to 2.7% from 2.1% in the previous quarter, highlighting the economy’s resilience.
The economy is seen expanding at a healthy rate in 2022 as tourism activity continues to recover, buoying the crucial hospitality sector. Moreover, a projected tightening of the labor market will sustain household spending, while incoming EU funds will spur investment. However, due to its dependence on the tourism sector, the country remains highly susceptible to the pandemic’s uncertain trajectory, with the Omicron variant posing a key threat to growth prospects.