Retail trade on the rise in both the euro area and EU28
Retail and wholesale services are key components within the European economy. They account for 11.1% of the EU's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and provide around 33 million jobs (almost 15% of total employment in the EU).
A Eurostat study conducted in February 2017 noted that the volume of retail trade rose by 0.7% in both the euro area (EA19) and all the EU Member States (when compared with January 2017). The highest recorded increases in the total retail trade volume were registered in Portugal (+3.1%), Croatia (+2.8%) and Slovenia (+2.3%), while the largest decreases were observed in Malta (-0.8%), Latvia (-0.7%) and Belgium (-0.6%). Over the past 12 months, a decrease of 0.9% was observed in Malta in this sector.
This decrease was one of the topics covered during a Joint MEUSAC and MCESD Core Group meeting held last month which discussed the upcoming National Reform Programme for Malta following the publication of the Commission’s Country Reports in February of this year. In April each year, Member States are obliged to submit their plans in relation to their public finances to the Commission. The plans include measures aimed at improving the economy and making it more sustainable. Later on in spring, the Commission will be issuing recommendations to each Member State for the consideration of each State when planning their next national budget.
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