FRENCH PRESS AGENCY – AFP
The European Commission on Wednesday slightly lowered its 2020 eurozone growth forecast, due to global trade tensions and political uncertainties, in particular, the risk of a no deal Brexit.
Brussels now expects gross domestic product (GDP) in the single currency bloc to increase by 1.4 percent in 2020, down from 1.5 percent in its previous forecast in May.
The EU executive’s growth estimate for 2019 remains unchanged at 1.2 percent.
“All EU economies are still set to grow this year and next, even if the robust growth in Central and Eastern Europe contrasts with the slowdown in Germany and Italy,” said EU vice president Valdis Dombrovskis.
According to Brussels, those two countries will have the lowest growth levels in the eurozone in 2019: 0.1 percent for Italy, 0.5 percent for Germany.
The commission, however, expects a significant acceleration for Germany in 2020, when growth would leap to 1.4 percent.
Inflation forecasts are also slightly revised downwards by 0.1 percentage points for 2019 and 2020, to 1.3 percent “mainly due to lower oil prices and a slightly worsening economic outlook”.
This figure remains well below the European Central Bank’s target of slightly below 2 percent inflation across the eurozone.