Exclusive-Germany to lower 2024 economic growth forecast, source says

By Thomson Reuters Feb 13, 2024 | 12:49 PM

By Christian Kraemer

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany’s federal government will significantly reduce its forecast for growth in the German economy to just 0.2% in a report due to be released next week, according to a source with knowledge of the matter.

Factors contributing toward the depressed figure — down from October’s forecast of 1.3% — included low growth in the global economy and a German constitutional court ruling that blew a hole in the country’s budget, according to the source.

The gloomy prospects for Germany’s economy in 2024 come after the country’s GDP shrank by 0.3% in 2023 under the pressure of high inflation, rising interest rates and a weak global economy.

German business association BDI issued a similarly low forecast in mid-January for growth of 0.3%, warning that the economy was at a “standstill”.

An economy ministry spokesperson said they could not comment on the numbers, adding the government would provide comment when the official report was published.

Germany’s finance minister Christian Lindner said on Sunday that the coalition government planned to present a concept to strengthen Germany’s position as an industrial location this spring, after multiple warnings from both him and Economy Minister Robert Habeck that the country was losing its competitiveness on a global scale.

(Reporting by Christian Kraemer, Writing by Victoria Waldersee; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)