Dutch economy continues strong growth, over 3 pct expected next year: DNB

The Dutch economy continues to grow strongly, with growth of over 3 percent expected for this year and next year, according to Dutch central bank DNB's latest forecast, RTL Nieuws reports.

The economic growth will reach a peak of 3.3 percent this year, the strongest growth in 10 years, according to DNB. Next year the bank expects the economy to grow by 3.1 percent, and 2.3 percent growth is expected in 2019. "We are moving from economic recovery to economic expansion", DNB director Job Swank said, according to the broadcaster.

Swank attributes the strong growth to increasing world trade, increasing consumer spending and the housing market that is picking up. Extra spending announced in the government agreement is "an extra step", he said. From the outside, a possible "hard" Brexit poses a risk to Dutch economic growth. 

Unemployment is expected to decrease further, from the current 4.9 percent to 3.5 percent in 2019. DNB notes that there is still room for wage increases in the trade and hotel and catering industries. Inflation will remain stable for the coming year, only increasing to 2.3 percent in 2019. This is mainly due to planned increases in energy taxes and the low VAT rate

With this forecast, the DNB is much more positive than its previous estimates in June. The central bank is also more optimistic than forecasts from ABN Amro, ING and Rabobank. They all anticipate economic growth of less than three percent, according to the broadcaster.