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Fri, 05 Feb, 2016 12:05:35 AM
Exports go below global average
FTimes – STT Report, Feb 5
Containers at Helsinki port. File Photo Lehtikuva.
The EU Commission has estimated that Finland’s economy will grow this year by 0.5 per cent. The previous forecast was 0.7 per cent.
According to the new forecast, next year the GDP will grow by 0.9 per cent, when, in the autumn, the commission estimated a GDP growth of 1.1 per cent.
Finland’s figures are well below the eurozone average. The commission noted that Finland is starting the year particularly weak. Economic growth was weaker than expected in the autumn, which caused forecasts to darken.
According to the commission, growth is needed to maintain domestic demand. Exports have been hampered by difficulties in Russia and China that kept the growth in Finnish exports below the global average.
However, exports are expected to grow to 1.5 per cent this year and 2.8 per cent next year.
Domestic demand helps keep the inflation low, which remains forecasted at 0.1 per cent this year. 
The unemployment rate will fall from 9.5 per cent last year to 9.4 per cent.
The fiscal deficit relative to GDP will fall, according to the commission, from 3.2 per cent last year to less than 2.8 per cent this year. The upper limit of the EU’s Stability Pact is set at 3 per cent. 
The general government debt will rise to 65 per cent this year from 62.7 per cent last year. The EU’s upper limit is set at 60 per cent.
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