Outgoing German Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel has debated his ministry's 2017 economic growth and employment outlook in the Cabinet. He once again warned more investments were required to cement current successes.
In what was probably his last important official act as economics minister before moving on to become foreign minister, German Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel on Wednesday presented his 2017 Economic Outlook in the Cabinet in Berlin.
He predicted record employment this year, with another 320,000 people to be added to the overall number of citizens in employment across Europe's powerhouse, meaning their will be a record 43.8 million people having jobs by the end of the year.
The report added the official jobless rate would keep hovering around 6 percent.
Gabriel forecast the German economy would expand by 1.4 percent in 2017, down from 1.9-percent growth last year.
He explained the year-on-year drop could partly be attributed to the lower number of working days this year. Adjusted for that, annualized growth would come in at 1.6 percent, the report showed.
Gabriel warned, though, that a lot more investments in infrastructure were needed to reduce a huge backlog and create the conditions for further GDP expansion in the country and enhance companies' competitiveness.
"In a period of fundamental change, we should not solely be focusing on saving money and reducing debt," he said. "What we definitely need is a large-scale, massive and courageous investment pact to shape our future," Gabriel concluded.
hg/jd (AFP, dpa)