Thursday, September 22, 2011

Ireland bounces back to swift growth

I don't normally just repeat news stories but this one seems quite a happy one. Ireland's GDP and GNP growth results for Quarter 2 of 2011 have been released, and they are far better than had been expected.

GDP: 1.6%
GNP: 1.1%

In Quarter 1 there had been GDP growth but GNP decline, and some commentators had been gloomy about the implications. This time Ireland seems to have grown fairly well.

By comparison with other developed countries this rally is impressive. More results of GDP growth in Quarter 2:

Britain 0.2%
Eurozone 0.2%
Italy 0.3%
Spain 0.2%
Portugal -0.6%
United States 1%
Australia 1.2%
Canada -0.1%
Sweden 0.9%
Netherlands 1.6%
Japan -0.5%
South Korea 0.9%
Denmark 1%

So this is positive news for Ireland indeed. Another interesting point is that Ireland's construction sector might have finally stopped shrinking. Construction has shrank every quarter since Q1 2008, and for three consecutive quarters before that. This latest result shows a quarterly increase of 0.1%.

Quarter 3 has seen a struggling global economy, which might hit Ireland's crucial exports and push the country back into recession. But it is a huge relief to see Ireland actually out-growing its neighbours again. For a while someone else has to be the sick man of Europe.

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