2008 OECD Economic Surveys: Spain 2008

image of OECD Economic Surveys: Spain 2008

This 2008 edition of OECD's periodic survey of Spain's economy examines challenges being faced including that of improving the education system, improving the matching of workers to jobs, and fostering competition in product markets to boost productivity.

English Also available in: French


Assessment and recommendations

The long period of virtually uninterrupted strong growth since the early 1990s has ended. This is likely to bring about lasting and profound economic changes. Housing construction is slowing sharply from an unsustainable level, and private consumption is also adjusting to more restrictive conditions in financial markets at home and abroad. The slowdown, although still at an early stage, has already had a significant impact on unemployment and is set to deepen in 2009, as the slide in housing construction is steepening. Some driving factors behind the robust historical performance – low real interest rates following euro adoption, ample credit availability, rising female labour force participation and massive immigration – are losing steam, portending only a modest rebound. Although predicting future potential growth is tricky, productivity gains have been weak, notwithstanding rapid capital accumulation, and it is as yet too early to assess whether the recent improvement will be sustained. Implementing an ambitious programme of structural reforms would surely enhance productivity performance in the medium and long term.

English Also available in: French

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