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Jobs on EU agenda as Spain slides

Monday, January 30, 2012 - 01:36

Jan.30 - European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso says youth jobs are a priority, as the Spanish economy looks set to slip into a long recession. Ciara Sutton reports

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European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso says Spain is not alone in battling its problems. Barroso met with Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy as Europe's leaders gathered in Brussels for debt crisis talks. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) EUROPEAN COMMISSION PRESIDENT, JOSE MANUEL BARROSO, SAYING: "A lot of problems that the Spanish government need to solve are also European problems. I am thinking in particular of youth unemployment... It is unacceptable that almost a quarter of young people in Europe are unemployed." Spain's economy looks set to slip into a long recession after contracting in the last quarter of 2011. And Rajoy said the country is not going to meet its current growth target for this year. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) SPAIN PRIME MINISTER, MARIANO RAJOY, SAYING: "We're going to present a new macroeconomic framework, but the current one says that we'll have GDP growth of 2.3 percent this year, these are the last macroeconomic projections in Spain, but it is evident that it won't end up like this." New data shows Spain's GDP shrank 0.3% between July and September, in line with forecasts. It followed zero growth in the third quarter. Spain has been gutted by the collapse of its once-powerful property market. And with almost half of young people out of work, has the highest unemployment figures in Europe. The European Commission forecasts economic growth of 0.5 percent for the 17 nations in the euro zone this year. But the IMF predicts a contraction of half a percent and has warned Europe could drag the world into recession. Ciara Sutton, Reuters

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Jobs on EU agenda as Spain slides

Monday, January 30, 2012 - 01:36