Revised ELSTAT figures for 2016 GDP ‘not final,’ government sources point out

The revised GDP figures released by Greece’s statistical agency ELSTAT were quarterly and not final, which the European Commission had also pointed out, government sources commented on Monday.

“We are waiting for the April figures,” the same sources noted, in response to questions about the figures released by ELSTAT earlier in the day, which revised earlier forecasts for growth with more pessimistic figures showing a slight contraction.

The goal was still to arrive at a staff-level agreement for completing the review before the next Eurogroup on March 20, the government sources noted, while stressing that the agreement must be comprehensive, with a discussion on the medium-term debt relief measures following the SLA. The sources said that the meetings with the institutions’ mission in Athens scheduled on Monday will review the progress made in the negotiations and discuss the next steps.

Regarding Monday’s cabinet meeting, Economy Minister Dimitri Papadimitriou produced a lengthy document that will act as the basis for the government’s strategic production reorganisation plan, the final version of which will be produced through a process of broad consultation with production organisations on a regional and central level, in accordance with the steps of a schedule outlined by the prime minister.

The sources said that the cabinet aims to meet every first Monday of each month.

Earlier, ELSTAT revised its estimates on the course of the country’s GDP in the fourth quarter of 2016 to -1.1 pct compared with the same period in 2015, from an initial estimate of a 0.3 pct growth reported in February 14.

On a quarterly basis, Greek GDP fell 1.2 pct in the fourth quarter of 2016 from the third quarter, from a 0.4 pct decline initially estimated. As a result, in 2016 the country’s GDP shrank 0.05 pct, from an initial estimate of a 0.3 pct growth rate.