The primary deficit for 2022 came to zero, compared to a forecast of 1.6%, Finance Minister Christos Staikouras told Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA-MPA) in an exclusive statement, due to higher development.
Greece’s economy covered a gap of nearly 3.4 billion euros. “The best fiscal result compared to the forecasts so far is mainly due to higher development,” he told ANA-MPA, adding that “this helps the economy and society.”
This also improves the target of general government surplus of 0.7% of GDP, ahead of Eurostat’s publication of its report on April 24, and brings Greece closer to achieving investment grade. This would bring an annual fiscal benefit of 900 million to 1 million euros, as it will lead to lower interest rates for public administration.
“One of the basic pillars of the government’s economic policy, from the start of its term, was to exercise a prudent fiscal policy, which due to continuous imported crises had to be combined with a strong and effective support of society and the economy over the fallout of the crises,” Staikouras said. “Having achieved that support, we gave emphasis to the stabilization and gradual improvement of public finances.”
Greece succeeded, he explained, as it registered the highest fiscal improvement in European for 2022, “leading its public deficit to zero, despite the fact that the support measures for society were among the most generous in Europe.” This, he said, “is yet another proof of the Greek economy’s high resilience, significant progress, and powerful dynamic, which were achieved thanks to the tough and methodical effort of everyone, citizens and state alike.”
“The drastic retraction of public debt as a GDP ratio by 45 percentage points within 3 years is also a result mainly of development, and constitutes a Eurozone record historically,” Staikouras told ANA-MPA, including it among the factors for his belief that Greece will achieve the investment-grade rating it seeks within 2023.