The IMF in a report on the European economy projects that the Greek economy will have a growth rate of 1.8 percent for 2017, 2.6 percent for 2018, and 1.9 percent for 2019.
This is despite the fact that the European Commission last week revised its projections downward to 1.6 percent for this year.
The IMF also projects increases in investments by 10.8 percent this year, 11.8 percent in 2018, and 13.1 percent for 2019.
Moreover, the fund recommends that efforts be redoubled to combat corruption in Greece and to pull Greek banks out of the Balkans.
Regarding the Greek banking system, the report notes that since the end of 2015, the needs of Italian and Greek banks represented on average over 18 percent of GDP in Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and Serbia.
Concerns about Greek banks
The report says that for the time being there are concerns only about certain Greek banks. It notes that subsidiaries of Greek banks have over recent years faced pressures from their “liquidity starved parents” and underlines that Greek banks should withdraw from the Balkans.
Regarding the fiscal deficit, the report says it will reach 1.7 percent of GDP this year and 1.1 percent for 2018, but 2019 is expected to produce a 0.2 percent surplus.
As for the national debt, that is projected at 180.2 percent of GDP this year, 184.5 percent in 2018, and 177.9 percent in 2019.
The IMF projects that the current account balance will shape up at 0.2 percent this year and 0.1 percent for both 2018 and 2019.
Domestic demand is expected to increase by 0.6 percent this year, 2.4 percent in 2018, and 1.9 percent in 2019.
The IMF projects that inflation in Greece will be at 1.2 percent this year, with a marginal increase to 1.3 percent in 2018, and 1.4 percent in 2019.
The fund expects unemployment to drop to 22.3 percent this year, 20.7 percent in 2018, and 19.5 percent for 2019.
The report underlines that Greece today is the only EU country with a large output gap, with real GDP being at much lower levels than the potential GDP.
At the same time, the IMF stressed that the fund will continue to support Europe in managing economic crises.