"European states are letting their debt slide," due to insufficient growth, notes French financial daily Les Echos.
Public debt in the Eurozone increased by €450bn in the first quarter of 2013 compared with the fourth quarter of 2012, according to the latest figures released by the European statistics office Eurostat.
The Eurozone's debt ratio rose from 90.6 per cent of GDP to 92.2 per cent in the first quarter. Those countries with the highest debt to GDP ratio include Greece at 160.5 per cent, Italy at 130.3 per cent, Portugal with 127.2 per cent and Ireland at 125.1 per cent. Le Echos reports that –
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although public deficits were slashed in half, on average, in Europe, the debt increased nonetheless and will only begin to shrink in the second half of 2014.
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