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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 February 2008, 22:47 GMT
Spanish in strong budget surplus
Euro notes
Spain has posted the second largest surplus in the eurozone
Spain posted a strong budget surplus in 2007, the second-largest in the eurozone, according to official data.

Spain's surplus rose by a third year-on-year to 23.4bn euros (17.6bn), hitting 2.2% of gross domestic product.

It is the third year in a row that Spain has achieved a surplus - by limiting public spending - after 30 years of deficits.

But separately, the European Commission lowered its eurozone growth forecast for 2008, including Spain.

On Thursday, the commission cut its forecast for the region as a whole to 1.8% from its November estimate of 2.2%, adding that inflation would stay high.

It predicted that Spain's economy would expand by 2.7%, rather than the 3% forecast earlier.

Spain, which is to have its election on 9 March, has been facing a slowing economy.

Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero has said in order to maintain growth at around 3%, he would be prepared to use the surplus to finance tax cuts and counter any wider global economic slowdown.

SEE ALSO
Country profile: Spain
25 Oct 06 |  Country profiles
EU cuts 2008 eurozone growth rate
21 Feb 08 |  Business
Eurozone growth 'to slow further'
26 Nov 07 |  Business
Spain hit by property crash fears
25 Apr 07 |  Business

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