National accounts show broad-based growth across economy

September 02, 2021

Ibec, the group that represents Irish business, noted today's National Accounts numbers published by the Central Statistics Office (CSO). Ibec welcomed the figures for the 2nd quarter of the year, which showed broad-based growth in both the domestic and export-facing sectors. In addition to continuing export growth, Modified Domestic Demand, a measure of investment and consumption, rose by 15.1% annually. This has driven GDP growth of 22% year-on-year, reflecting a strong Covid bounce amid easing restrictions.

Ibec Economist, Hazel Ahern-Flynn, said: “While Ireland’s exporting sectors have been consistently strong performers over the course of the pandemic, the relaxing of restrictions in the 2nd quarter of the year has brought welcome relief to the domestic economy. This is borne out by today’s figures, which showed broad-based growth among domestic-facing sectors, on the back of growing consumption and investment, while Ireland’s export growth continues on its impressive upwards trajectory.

“GDP in the first half of the year is up by 20.8% compared with the same period in 2019, pre-Covid. While volatility driven by recurring Covid restrictions in 2020 and 2021 can lead to large swings in the annual figures, the strong increase in both GDP and GNP since 2019 is confirmation of an economy experiencing exceptional growth, despite the challenging backdrop.

“The improvements in domestic demand are a welcome signal that the recovery is now being felt more widely across the economy. While this is positive news, this strong growth brings its own challenges as both labour constraints and input prices continue to rise on the back of increased demand. As the resumption of normal activity continues, the focus can now shift towards supporting a sustainable and continued recovery, along with leveraging the available resources to invest in Ireland’s future growth.”