Palma.—Financial experts yesterday forecast that the Balearic economy will have grown b y 1.3 percent come the end of this year, the second highest in Spain along with Madrid and that the region's GDP should hit 1.2 percent, the set highest regional output in the country.

The figures were released yesterday by the BBVA bank's research team which has recently concluded its study of the financial and economic situation of Spain.

Balearic growth has been far higher that than the national average of 0.8 percent in Spain and even far more encouraging than the third quarter growth posted in the United Kingdom of just 0.5 percent.

However, next year, the economy could shrink by 0.1 percent because of the region's massive public deficit, the continually static construction industry and unemployment which is set to rise further over the winter.

Nevertheless, with the tourism outlook for the Balearics extremely bright and a series of major private investment initiatives on the table, the region is expected to remain an economic growth market leader in 2012.

According to the conclusion to the BBVA research, the Spanish economy in general is still “static” and that, unless urgent steps are taken, the country will suffer negative growth with fears of it slipping back into recession. And, BBVA recommends that the regional governments reel in their budgets further in order to meet their deficit targets.

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