Friday, 28 April 2023, 18:07
Malaga is one of the provinces that has shown the strongest signs of economic recovery since the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a new report.
The province was "the one which has best recovered the pre-pandemic level among the economies compared", according to the Economic Barometer quarterly report presented by the Colegio de Economistas on Friday, 28 April.
Malaga's growth exceeded the Andalucía average by 30% between 2019-2022, and the national average by more than 50%, showing positive trends for 2023 and 2024.
"Spain has recovered more slowly and more weakly than the surrounding economies, although Andalucía has performed somewhat better and the Malaga indicators are significantly more positive," the report stated.
It was noted that Malaga showed greater economic activity, generation of wealth and job creation, based on "a more flexible labour structure, a more dynamic financial sector, training of workers, communications and telecommunications connections and the attractiveness of the quality of life of the Costa del Sol for foreign professionals".
On the flip side, the report did warn however that Malaga suffered a greater fall in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020.
Regarding the labour market, the association of economists looked at the data of the number of people affiliated to the Social Security system, which showed an inter-annual growth of 15% in July 2022 and in February 2023 is still 11%, compared to the Andalucian and Spanish growth rates of 6.7% and 7.1%.
Despite the strong growth in employment, the reduction in the unemployment rate had "not been very significant", which could be explained by a population boom in Malaga.
Economists also noted in the report how the rapid recovery of Malaga's tourism sector had impacted its economic recovery.
The recovery of air traffic above 92% of the pre-pandemic figures, an increase in domestic air traffic by 20%, more hotel beds and swathes of visitors staying in them had all played key roles.
The economists' association however considered some obvious risks that could jeopardise Malaga's economic recovery. They three listed were issues with the national economy, legal and fiscal insecurity and an unstable housing market.
"We find ourselves in a particularly complex situation in the province, where there are serious problems of access to first homes, not only in terms of ownership, but also in terms of access to rental housing. On the Costa del Sol and in Malaga city, the year-on-year increase in rental prices is well over 22%," said Fernando del Alcáza, director of studies at the Colegio de Economistas.
The report did mention that a lack of rental housing could create "situations of tension and social conflict" in Malaga in the summer, as well as making it difficult for workers from other provinces to enter the hospitality sector, leading to a "very sharp increase" in wages to cover the cost of accommodation.
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