The Austrian authorities welcome the consultations with the Fund and appreciate the high quality of the staff report. They broadly agree with the staffs assessment of Austria’s economic and financial situation and its general recommendations on economic, fiscal and financial policies.
The staff report shows that Austria has weathered the crisis well and the recovery is on firm grounds. Supported by generous automatic stabilizers and targeted labour market policies, consumption and employment held up well during the crisis, contributing to economic stability and setting the stage for a quick rebound in output growth as external conditions improved. The fiscal position is favourable in international comparison, although public debt is expected to remain above 60 percent of GDP for some time. The Austrian authorities take note of the issues raised regarding public finances, the financial sector and the long-term growth strategy.