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Spain’s economy to grow up to 3 pct in 2016

Spain’s economy to grow up to 3 pct in 2016

MADRID: Spanish acting Minister of Economy and Competitiveness Luis de Guindos expects the country’s economy to grow up to 3 percent in 2016, local media reported on Friday.

De Guindos, who commented new growth data published by Spain’s Statistical Office (INE), explained that he did see any sign of slowing down as the Bank of Spain had pointed out this week, Spain’s economics newspaper Expansion reported.

He expected the gross domestic product (GDP) to grow around 0.8 percent in the second quarter, as it did in the first one, and by around 3 percent in 2016, above the 2.7 percent previously predicted.

The INE reported that the country’s economy grew by 0.8 percent from the last quarter in 2015 to the first quarter of the year, while growing by 3.4 percent on a year-on-year basis.

The INE pointed out that consumption had an important impact on the GDP growth with households demand growing by 0.9 percent between January and March and by 3.7 percent on a year-on-year basis, the highest figure since Spain started to grow.

On the other hand, investment increased by 0.4 percent in the first quarter of the year compared to the 1.1 percent growth of the last quarter in 2015. Investment in the building sector fell by 0.2 percent in the first quarter of the year and investment in capital goods rose by 1.3 percent.

Meanwhile, the INE said that employment grew by 3.2 percent in the first quarter year-on-year which meant around 533,000 new job opportunities over the last 12 months. De Guindos said that Spain could surpass expectations when it came to job creation.