Ibec Upgrades Its 2014 Growth Forecast
Published on Oct 7 2014 1:25 PM in Retail
The business group Ibec has raised its 2014 growth forecast from 3.1% to 6.1%, reporting “spectacular growth” for Ireland’s economy, in its latest Quarterly Economic Outlook. Ibec also raised its 2015 GDP growth forecast from 3.9% to 4.5%, and this year’s GNP growth forecast from 2.5% to 5.4%, in its Q3 Economic Outlook.
Exports will grow by over 12% this year, the strongest growth since 2000, Ibec predicts. What is more, imports will grow by 11%, with the resulting net exports contributing 3.5% GDP growth.
The group said it expects an investment growth of 14.3% this year, and 13.8% in 2015, based on its business sentiment index. Disposable income is due to increase by around 3% next year, as a result of increased job creation and a reduction in the budget adjustment, the group said. Meanwhile, consumer spending is expected to rise by 1.5% and 2.9% in 2015.
Despite overall year-on-year employment growth dropping from 3.2% in the second half of last year to 2% at present, Ibec highlighted that these figures are still the strongest in the EU. Furthermore, it expects the number of those at work to return to early 2009 levels by as early as 2015.
Speaking to Business & Leadership, Ibec head of policy and chief economist, Fergal O’Brien commented, “Importantly, growth is coming from a broad range of sources, with domestic demand and trade contributing strongly. Ireland is set to be one of the world's best performing developed economies this year.
“Ireland's growth figures need to be taken in context. Strong growth is typical in the early stages of recovery and the economy is still 3.5% below its peak in volume terms and 7.5% down in money terms. However, some really tough years of economic adjustment are clearly paying off,” O’Brien added.
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