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Andalucía's economy forecast to return to pre-pandemic levels with a 5.5% growth

Report notes economic recovery in all sectors in 2022, but warns of the risks of inflation or possible new coronavirus variants

JOSÉ LUIS PIEDRA

Andalucía's economy is on track to return to its pre-pandemic level with a 5.5% growth, according to the projections made by Observatorio Económico de Andalucía (OEA), the independent economic analysis group based in Seville. The growth forecast for Andalucía's GDP in 2022 is in line with that of the rest of Spain.

These positive predictions for Andalucía's economy were outlined by Francisco Ferraro, the president of the OEA, during the presentation of the report of the final quarter of 2021, in which the GDP grew by 2.2%. This growth was 0.2% more than the National Statistics Institute had anticipated.

The report revealed that during 2021 as a whole the GDP grew by 5.3%, which was 0.3% more than expected.

Ferraro praised the resilience of Andalucía's economy compared to the rest of Spain, given that it fared better during the 2020 crisis and recovered more strongly in 2021. The OEA's study revealed that most sectors had regained their pre-pandemic activity levels. At the forefront of this recovery is the agricultural sector, with an emphasis on productivity levels in Andalucía.

Following this trend, according to the OEA report, noteworthy economic recovery has also been made in other sectors such as industry, construction, public services, health and education.

On top of this, the power of the tourism industry in the south of Spain has helped to dampen the economic effects of the pandemic. 2021 saw a significant number of Spanish tourists in Andalucía.

However, despite its positive forecast for the year, the report warns that there is still a degree of uncertainty due to the pressure of inflation, caused by rising prices, as well as the continuing pandemic and the possibility of new variants.

In this respect, growth for the current quarter is predicted to be moderate, due to the recent Omicron wave.