Italy again rose to its feet and emerged from a state of emergency, as evidenced by all macroeconomic indicators. This statement was made by the head of the Italian government, Romano Prodi, summing up the activities of his cabinet over the past year. Next year, he promised to increase salaries, improve labor productivity and reduce taxes.
“In 2008, we intend to increase wages for workers and employees, increase labor productivity, and significantly reduce the tax burden for workers whose salaries are below average,” said Prodi. He also said that Italy’s unemployment rate fell to its lowest level in 25 years.
Not so optimistic forecasts in Germany. After a successful last year and a promising start to the current year, experts expect the German economy to slow down.
“The picture from our institute’s survey shows that economic growth will not stop, but its speed will definitely slow down,” said Michael Heshter, director of the Institute for German Economics, in whose report the upcoming decline in growth is explained by higher commodity prices, as well as high euro exchange rate.
German Economy Minister Michael Glos said that his agency plans to again lower the level of GDP growth for next year, despite the fact that in October the forecast was reduced from 2.4% to 2%.