Italy runs faster than the Eurozone in 2021 but will be slower than the Euroland countries with the return to pre-Covid levels, levels that our country will only catch up again in 2022. Brussels has raised its estimates on the growth of Italian GDP in 2021, bringing it to + 5% compared to 4.2% of spring estimates, while the area that includes all 19 countries of the Eurozone will grow by 4.8% (from 4.3% since May).
For 2022, on the other hand, the European Commission has reduced its forecast to 4.2% compared to the 4.4% previously indicated, a rate lower than + 4.5% (compared to the 4.4% previously forecast). euro zone economy is expected to expand by 4.5%, compared with 4.4% previously forecast.
Economic activity, according to the summer forecasts published today, proved to be more resilient than expected and increased slightly in the first quarter of this year, despite the stringent containment measures. Manufacturing sector performance data and business and consumer surveys indicate that real GDP growth gained further momentum in the second quarter and is expected to strengthen significantly in the second half of the year.
The forecast for 2021, explains Brussels, is significantly higher than that indicated in the spring, due to the substantial upward revision of GDP in the first quarter and the stronger-than-expected response of economic activity to the relaxation of restrictions. The improvement in the health situation, which allowed the easing of most of the restrictions in June, sets the stage for solid and sustained growth in the forecast period.
Public and private investments, supported by the lower uncertainty of companies on demand forecasts and by the application of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan, will remain the main growth driver. A significant rebound in private consumption is also expected, supported by the improving prospects for the labor market and by the gradual use of accumulated savings.
A dynamic foreign environment should benefit exports, but the return of tourism revenues should be more gradual. Inflation turned positive at the beginning of the year and the growth in the price of oil should lead to an increase in consumer prices in our country of 1.4% in 2021, with a decrease to 1.2% in the 2022. Inflation rate that instead in the euro area this year will be 1.9%, and 1.4% next year.
“Italy is expected to reach pre-crisis growth levels in the course of 2022, while several other countries will reach them earlier, in the course of 2021”, explained the European Commissioner for Economy, Paolo Gentiloni. “As regards the forecasts for 2022 – he specified – we must consider that for the Italian growth prospects, in addition to the rebound elements after the crisis, the NRR has a very important role given the size of the available resources”.
“For now, we in this plan have only assessed the impact of investments in our forecasts, but we have not assessed the impact of the reforms that can significantly increase the chances of growth for Italy in subsequent years”, he added. .
For Gentiloni, who specified that the latter is the “highest upward revision we have made in more than 10 years, in line with business confidence which has reached a record level in recent months”, the real challenge is to “transform the rebound into stable and more sustainable growth “. Also in view of the return to January 1, 2023 of the stability pact.
With regard to the discussion on the revision, concluded the EU Commissioner, “we need to encourage everyone to evaluate the need to continue with expansionary policies and support for our economies. The rules, the revision of which we will discuss by reopening this debate in the autumn, must be capable of encourage what is needed today, hence stability ‘, but above all growth and sustainable growth “.