GREECE IN CRISIS: One in five unemployed as PM vows to ‘vindicate’ Greek sacrifice
Greece’s statistics service ELSTAT said the jobless rate eased to 20.7 percent in October, however with one in five still unemployed time is running out for the so-called “lost generation”.
New data on the debt-riddled Greek state shows the number of registered unemployed at 990.288 people, with younger persons aged up to 24 bearing the brunt of being out of work.
But life is yet to improve for Greece’s “lost generation” with those aged 15 to 24, still suffering a jobless rate of 40.8 per cent although this is down from 44.4 percent a year ago.
Greece’s jobless rate, which hit a record high of 27.9 percent in September 2013, has been coming down in recent months but remains the highest in the Eurozone.
Greece expects the unemployment rate to fall to 18.4 per cent this year, based on projections in its 2018 budget draft.
Unemployment in the 19 countries sharing the euro stood at 8.8 per cent in October, the lowest rate since January 2009.
Although unemployment in Greece remains shocking, observers the country is beginning to move in the right direction.
Earlier this week Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told his first cabinet meeting of the year that Greece is in the “final stretch” of its third bailout programme.
The PM told cabinet members that he expected the debt-stricken country, under international surveillance since 2010, to return to international markets after its current economic adjustment program officially expires in August.
Mr Tsipras described 2018 as a ‘a year of vindication’ for Greece, he said: “2018 is a milestone year … a year full of challenges that in order to be met require hard work so that this can also be a year of vindication for the sacrifices of the Greek people.”
But commentators remain sceptical about Greek’s chances. Columnist Tony Barber says Greece risks complacency as the bailout project winds down and a type of “Greece fatigue” sets in among other Eurozone members.
Mr Barber says Europeans are tired of Greece’s plight and want to wind down their involvement, in order to, “move on to the bigger challenge of advancing eurozone integration”.
However, at the other end of the Eurozone spectrum, Germany is thriving.
It was announced today the German economy expanded by 2.2 percent in 2017, the fastest rate since 2011.
Due to a statistical anomaly, once that figure is adjusted, Germany’s GDP actually rose by 2.5 percent.
London-Dubai-Mumbai wealth management company Sun Global Investments told Express.co.uk that Germany is on a roll.
Mihir Kapadia, CEO and Founder described Germany¹s performance as “impressive”, and said: “The GDP figures for 2017 are more than the 1.5 per cent forecast, indicating sentiment has changed and marking a strong German recovery.
“Today’s figures also reaffirm German stronghold in the EU.”