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José Ignacio Goirigolzarri, chairman of Bankia, during his speech on the occasion of the ‘2018 Internationalization Awards’.

Business

'Awards for Internationalization 2018'

Goirigolzarri: "The Spanish economy has positive elements, but there are risks in the medium term that must be managed"

The chairman of Bankia has affirmed that unemployment and public debt are the two major structural challenges of the Spanish economy.

Communication Bankia

By  Communication Bankia

Publish on 
02 October 2019 - 21:00

  • The chairman of Bankia has participated in the 'Internationalization Awards 2018', held in La Rioja

Bankia's chairman, José Ignacio Goirigolzarri, has stated that currently the Spanish economy has "positive elements", but he has also pointed out that there are "obvious risks in the medium term" that must be managed and prioritised.

Goirigolzarri has participated in the 'Internationalization Awards 2018’ of the Chamber of Commerce of La Rioja, where he drew attention to two major structural challenges of the Spanish economy: unemployment and public debt.

From his point of view, there is a need for "sustained increases" in GDP to tackle unemployment, as well as a review of training plans, education and active employment policies. Regarding public debt, he believes that the fact that it has a similar value to GDP "requires clear discipline in the public accounts".

The global economy, more dependent on the US

Goirigolzarri pointed out that the global economy "is now more dependent on the US", while Europe and emerging countries such as China have weakened significantly. In this regard, he has ensured that the European economy is immersed in a deceleration process that leads to growth around 1%.

In this context, he has mentioned the risks caused by the US-China trade war and the protectionist policies that are becoming more prevalent across the world, the strong imbalances in emerging countries such as Argentina or Turkey, Brexit and the uncertainty about its ultimate outcome, the Italian situation and the lack of leadership in the European project.

"This complex situation is affecting global economic growth", said the chairman of Bankia, adding that open economies, such as Germany, are the most affected. He added that the Federal Reserve has lowered its interest rate for the first time in ten years and the ECB has again reduced the benchmark interest rate and has resumed new liquidity stimuli.

Spain: six years of growth

In his opinion, all these risks coming from abroad "have a clear potential impact" on Spain, given that "it has changed enormously" in the last decade. "Today we are a country in which exports account for 33% of our GDP, a weight comparable to that of economies such as France, Italy and the United Kingdom, which, logically, makes the evolution of the international economy more relevant for Spain", he added.

Summing up the current situation in Spain, Goirigolzarri pointed out that in the last six years the Spanish economy has grown significantly and has created more than two million jobs, which has allowed it to reach the highest per capita income level in Spanish history. He also mentioned that Spain has entered a new phase of the growth cycle in which growth will be "less pronounced" than in recent years, although it continues to grow above the European average and continues to create jobs.

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