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Portugal & Spain

Although the Portuguese economy has slowed in the first quarter of 2024, there is growth both in the country’s GDP and employment rate. The GDP growth forecast for 2024 has been reduced by 0.1 percentage points to 1.2%, but this is still above the anticipated EU average. Meanwhile, the farmers’ protests all over the EU, including in Portugal, did not lead to significant supply chain disruption.

The centre-right Democratic Alliance won the national election held on March 10. The vote took place two years ahead of schedule after a corruption investigation led to the resignation of Socialist Prime Minister António Costa.

According to the revised OECD forecast for 2024 published recently, Spain is expected to become the best-performing large economy in the EU, with economic growth of 1.5% projected for 2024 and 2% for 2025. The inflation forecast has been lowered to 3.3% while the unemployment rate fell by 0.27 percentage points in a single month. However, a lack of investment - both public and private - might affect the growth of the economy.

For our sector, the market in Spain and Portugal is generally slow and demand has not reached expected levels. Prices for most grades are being driven by market shortages. Any pick-up in demand from end-users would influence the scrap market significantly.