Inflation accelerated in 2022, recording an average rise of 9.3 per cent, mainly driven by increases in energy and food prices, also feeding through to core inflation. Inflationary pressures eased in the last three months of last year due to the retreating energy prices. Continuing the trend recorded in the last quarter of 2022, headline inflation declined in the first half of 2023, but strengthened again in July 2023. Ηeadline inflation remained stable at 3.5 per cent in August, as the slower decline in energy prices offset a smaller price increase in food and non-energy industrial goods.
Labour market developments remained positive in the first half of 2023 with unemployment declining and employment increasing, though at a decelerating rate.
The current account deficit widened significantly in 2022, mainly due to increasing imports, despite the robust growth of goods exports and the ongoing recovery in travel receipts. In the first half of 2023, the current account deficit decreased year over year mainly due to an improvement in the balance of goods, in the secondary income and, to a lesser extent, in the balance of services.
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