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OECD Economic Surveys: Finland 2003

image of OECD Economic Surveys: Finland 2003

This 2003 edition of OECD's periodic review of Finland's economy examines recent economic developments, policies and prospects and includes special features on the effectiveness of public spending; ageing, pension reform and long-term public finances; and policies to boost potential output growth.

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Macroeconomic Developments, Prospects and Policy Challenges

Finland was more severely affected than most other euro area countries by the global downturn in 2001, but has also recovered more quickly in 2002. Indeed it could be the only euro area country that enjoys faster growth in 2002 than in 2001. One factor underlying the more severe downturn was the global slump in demand for ICT (information and communication technology) goods and the importance of this sector in the Finnish economy, although more traditional exports particularly those of the forestry industry also experienced a sharp contraction. The ICT sector has also been prominent in leading the economy out of the downturn (Figure 1). Nevertheless, the outlook for this sector, in particular the speed with which third generation mobile telephony will be adopted, represents a major uncertainty for the economy as a whole.

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