April 23, 2018
According to the latest report by Eurostat, in 2017, the government deficit and debt of both the euro area (EA19) and the EU28 decreased in relative terms compared with 2016. “In the euro area the government deficit to GDP ratio fell from 1.5% in 2016 to 0.9% in 2017,and in the EU28 from 1.6% to 1.0%. In the euro area the government debt to GDP ratio declined from 89.0% at the end of 2016 to 86.7% at the end of 2017, and in the EU28 from 83.3% to 81.6%.”
The member-states that reported a surplus in 2017 are as follows: Malta (+3.9%), Cyprus (+1.8%), the Czech Republic (+1.6%), Luxembourg (+1.5%), Sweden and Germany (both +1.3%), the Netherlands (+1.1%), Denmark (+1.0%), Bulgaria (+0.9%), Greece and Croatia (both +0.8%) and Lithuania (+0.5%). Slovenia reported a government balance, while the lowest government deficits as a percentage of GDP were recorded in Ireland and Estonia(both -0.3%), Latvia (-0.5%) and Finland (-0.6%). Spain and Portugal both recorded deficits of 3.1% and 3% respectively.
At the end of 2017, the lowest ratios of government debt to GDP were recorded in Estonia (9.0%), Luxembourg (23.0%), Bulgaria (25.4%), the Czech Republic (34.6%), Romania (35.0%) and Denmark (36.4%). Fifteen Member States had government debt ratios higher than 60% of GDP, with the highest registered in Greece (178.6%), Italy (131.8%), Portugal (125.7%), Belgium (103.1%) and Spain (98.3%).
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