AMSTERDAM: The government’s macro-economic policy unit CPB on Wednesday revised its growth forecasts for the Dutch economy upwards to 3.3% this year and 2.5% in 2018.
The increase is due to the ‘very strong second quarter’ and would mark the ‘the first time since the beginning of the crisis (2007) that growth is higher than 3%’.
The figures are contained in a preliminary version of the annual macro-economic outlook which is always published to coincide with the budget on the third Tuesday in September. The new figures are a sharp rise on the June forecasts and mainly due to the ‘very favourable’ development in Dutch exports, the CPB said. The agency also sees unemployment falling to 4.9% this year and again to 4.3% in 2018. Inflation will remain around 1.3%.
Prime minister Mark Rutte spoke to reporters about the figures while on his way to the ongoing coalition negotiations. ‘Today we can celebrate the fact that the Netherlands has put the economic crisis behind it and that we have the fastest growing economy in the western world,’ he said. ‘We are growing twice as fast as the US or Germany.’