January 24, 2018
Government debt to GDP ratio fell to 82.5% in the third quarter (2017) compare to the 83.3% recorded in the second quarter in 2017. Year over year third quarter government debt decreased from 82.9% to 82.5% in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
At the end of the third quarter of 2017, debt securities accounted for 80.3% of euro areas and 81.4% of EU28 general government debt. According to Eurostat, “Loans made up 16.5% and 14.5% respectively and currency and deposits represented 3.1% of euro area and 4.2% of EU28 government debt. Due to the involvement of EU governments in financial assistance to certain Member States, quarterly data on intergovernmental lending (IGL) is also published. The share of IGL in GDP at the end of the third quarter of 2017 amounted to 2.1% in the euro area and to 1.6% in the EU28.”
This marginal decrease in the debt to GDP ratio was achieve by a wide cross section of countries within the Eurozone. Compared with the second quarter of 2017, three Member States registered an increase in their debt to GDP ratio at the end of the third quarter of 2017, twenty three a decrease and the debt-to-GDP ratio for Estonia and Luxembourg remained unchanged. The highest increases in the ratio were recorded in Greece (+1.3 percentage points – pp) and Belgium (+0.9 pp). The largest decreases were recorded in the Czech Republic (-4.3 pp), Cyprus (-2.9 pp), Lithuania (-2.3 pp) and Bulgaria (-2.1 pp).
Compared with the third quarter of 2016, three Member States registered an increase in their debt to GDP ratio at the end of the third quarter of 2017, twenty four a decrease and Latvia remained stable. Increases in the ratio were recorded in Italy (+2.0 pp), Luxembourg (+1.7 pp) and France (+1.0 pp), while the largest decreases were recorded in Cyprus (-7.4 pp), the Netherlands (-4.5 pp), Malta (-4.4 pp) and Germany (-4.1 pp).
Government debt at the end of the third quarter 2017 by Member State
The highest ratios of government debt to GDP at the end of the third quarter of 2017 were recorded in Greece (177.4%), Italy (134.1%) and Portugal (130.8%), and the lowest in Estonia (8.9%), Luxembourg (23.4%) and Bulgaria (25.6%).
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