New figures from the EU’s statistics office show that GDP per capita in Romania is the second lowest in the Union, ahead of only Bulgaria. But the Eurostat figures, published December 13, show that GDP per capita climbed slightly against the EU average in 2011. GDP per capita in Romania was 53 percent lower than the EU average in 2009 and 2010, before climbing slightly to 51 percent below the average in 2011 – the most recent year covered.
Latvia was next above Romania, with GDP per capita 42 percent below the EU average in 2011. Everywhere else was less than 40 percent below the EU 27 average figure. The highest GDP per capita figures among the former Communist states in the EU were in Slovenia and the Czech Republic, 16 and 20 percent below the EU average respectively in 2011. However, both countries have seen the gap with the average figure widen since 2009, when Slovenia’s GDP per capita was 13 percent below the average and the Czech Republic’s was 17 percent lower.
Way out in front was Luxembourg, with GDP per capita 171 percent higher than the EU 27 average. Next highest was the Netherlands, a more modest 31 percent ahead of the average.
Eurostat has also published figures for Actual Individual Consumption (AIC) per capita, which according to Eurostat gives a more accurate picture of the “material welfare situation” of households. However, the figures for both Romania and Bulgaria are very similar to the GDP percentages and show similar trends. Again, Romania was the second lowest ahead of Bulgaria, while the gap with the EU average in 2011 was slightly wider than for GDP per capita, with AIC at 53 percent below the EU 27 average. A very slight closing of the gap (1 percent) between 2009 and 2011 was also seen in the AIC results for Romania.
Liam Lever, email@example.com