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Warm prognosis: Economic growth of at least 5% by 2021, when average salary would be 700 euros. Difficulties: euro exchange rate and inflation
de Marin Pana 25.9.2017
Romania’s economic growth is expected to remain well above the 5% threshold by 2020, and GDP growth in euro will be at least 8% between 2017 and 2020, according to the preliminary autumn forecast released by the National Prognosis Commission (CNP).
The explanation for this significant difference stays in estimating a decline in the evolution of the euro/leu exchange rate for the next four years, as we can see in the table below:
- GDP forecast until 2021
- GDP (billion lei)
- (billion euro)
- Real growth
- – in euro
Basically, all this projection essentially depends on the ratio between leu and the single European currency, which will have to be considered in a context where we already are by the threshold of 4.60 lei/euro and the negative balance of the current account will increase, according to the same CNP forecast, from about EUR4 billion in 2016 to nearly EUR5 billion in 2017 and even above this level in 2018.
Without going into more complicated technical details, it should be noted, in context, that the current year’s deflator which adjusts the GDP result in current prices, recently increased by RON22 billion (from RON815 billion to RON837 billion), has a position totally outside the values registered in the 2015-2021 period. Especially that it has been revalued from 2.0 in the spring forecast to 4.1 in the current, autumn forecast.
- GDP deflator
Average national monthly net wage is to exceed the threshold of 3,000 lei by 2021, the 500 euro/month level being already checked this year, the 600 euro/month level in 2019 and the 700 euro/month level in 2021.
- Forecast of wage evolution until 2021
- Real growth
Obviously, these increases also depend on the decline of the euro/leu exchange rate but also on maintaining inflation around the optimal level, theoretically speaking, (2%) and even below the mid-rate of the BNR target range, respectively 2.5 percentage points +/- 1%.
However, it could be noted the decline by about half and below of the wage growth rhythm, which will be much closer to the GDP growth and the real possibilities of the economy in the coming years.
- Forecast of price evolution for population until 2021
- CPI (Dec)
- Annual average
Unfortunately, the projection of the annual inflation made by central bank’s specialists until the second quarter of 2019 does not look very much like the data provided by the CNP. The middle value of the uncertainty range they calculated for the CPI is somewhere around 3% and the values are even higher in the first half of 2019.
- BNR projection for annual price inflation CPI
- CPI (middle value)
The values brought forward by the CNP in the preliminary autumn forecast and used by the Government for the future economic planning, including for the 2018 budget draft (together with the three-year projection required by the European practice in the field), are found in the BNR’s vision only at the bottom of the uncertainty range calculated. That would ask, as an utmost necessity, for implementing the most optimistic scenario possible, including from the perspective of the (obviously, uncontrollable) developments in the global market.
So, with the eyes on the CNP’s forecast, we can only cross our fingers for the very robust economic growth and the ideal domestic inflation in the context of an increasing average salary toward a level of 700 euros.
Also let us imagine how the euro/leu exchange rate will decline for four years, back to the level of 4.50 lei/euro in 2021.