GDP in 2020: Historic decline of 6.3%

The COVID-19 pandemic hit the Austrian economy in 2020 (-6.3% in real terms) much harder than the financial crisis of 2009 (-3.9% in real terms). According to currently available data, the Austrian economic performance is among the lower third of EU member states. Germany, which is the most important trading partner, outperforms Austria (+4.8% in real terms), whereas Italy, which is the second important trading partner, underperforms Austria (-8.9% in real terms). (Sources: EUROSTAT; DESTATIS; ISTAT).

Austrian GDP at current prices amounted to approximately 377.3 bn euros (-5.1%) in 2020 and GDP per inhabitant equalled 42 300 euros.

The decline in the producing sector (-5.5% in real terms) is less severe, than in the service sector (-6.1% in real terms). In particular, government-related services (e.g. public administration, human health and education) supported the service sector. Compared to other industries, the decrease of construction (-2.1% in real terms) was moderate. Manufacturing was hit harder with a drop by 7.1%. Due to lockdowns, accommodation and food service activities (-35.8% in real terms), arts, entertainment and personal services (-18.3% in real terms) as well as transportation (-13.8 in real terms) suffered the strongest losses. Trade dropped by 4.8% in real terms.

The crisis also affected gross fixed capital formation, which fell by 5.7% in real terms in 2020. All investment categories recorded a decline. Capital formation of transport equipment dropped by 13.2% in real terms, followed by capital formation in machinery (-11.5% in real terms).

Consumption expenditures also suffered massive losses during 2020 (-6.1% in real terms. This was mainly due to the heavy losses in consumption of private households (-9.4% in real terms). As on the production side, services were mostly affected (accommodation and food services, transportation, personal services). In contrast, durable consumption goods and digital services increased. Government consumption expenditure grew by 2.3% in real terms due to the acquisition of goods associated with COVID-19 containment measures.

The performance of manufacturing is also reflected in foreign trade. Export of goods declined by 6.4% in real terms, import of goods declined by 6.8% in real terms. Again, services were affected stronger. Both exports (-18.1% in real terms) and imports of services (-16.7% in real terms) dropped sharply, considerably due to the international travel restrictions.

The implicit price index of GDP (derived from the GDP at current prices and at constant prices respectively, based on previous year’s prices) was 101.2. Hence, the overall price development was somewhat below the change of the consumer prices index (+1.4%).

Main aggregates
Gross domestic product per economic sectors, current prices
Gross domestic product per industry, current prices
Gross domestic product per industry, chained volume indices
Income approach of gross domestic product, current prices
Expenditure on gross domestic product, current prices
Expenditure on gross domestic product, chained volume indices
Final consumption expenditure, current prices
Final consumption expenditure, chained volume indices
Private consumption, current prices
Private consumption, constant prices
Gross capital formation, current prices
Gross capital formation, chained volume indices
Compensation of employees
Employment according to ESA 2010 concepts

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