Deutsche Bank, one of the world's largest investment banks and the fourth most important in Europe by volume of assets, has just dealt another blow to the international credibility of the Spanish government by utterly contradicting its economic forecasts for 2020 and 2021. Indeed, the German bank's predictions for the worst-case scenario could not be more alarming: a recession of 19.5% and growth of 2.5% in 2021. These are only calculations, certainly, and at the low end of expectations for the evolution of the Spanish economy. But if we stick to what is regarded as the most likely scenario, the decline in this year's GDP would be 15% and the recovery next year would not exceed 6%. These are very far from the forecasts which the Spanish government sent to Brussels, which predict that the fall this year will not reach double digits and that 2021 will bring growth of 7%. Ministers are thus presenting a discourse which is very unlikely to come about: what we lose this year, we will almost fully regain in the following year.
None of this will happen and, if the German bank's forecasts are correct, we will be the country that suffers most from this crisis, worse than Italy and France. That it is a German bank which makes these forecasts is also particularly problematic for Spain as it helps to create a climate of pessimism in the country with respect to the economy. It is a very delicate thing considering the struggle between southern and northern Europe, the critical German view regarding the behaviour of Spanish authorities on issues of spending containment in recent years and the position of the German Constitutional Court on the actions of the European Central Bank and its purchase of sovereign debt from countries in extreme difficulty.
The economic debate is already fully underway in all countries, taking over, in many respects, from that on health. There is, in every government, more haste than we are told about to speed up the de-escalation of lockdown since public accounts are falling to unknown depths. They step on the accelerator with one foot (bringing lockdown to an end) and the brake with the other (out of fear of a hypothetical resurgence), while the number of deaths from coronavirus reduces slightly, but remains high.
A recommendation to those who govern: make realistic and honest speeches, leave out the demagoguery, since no one knows what reality we will end up with, and don't make promises you can't keep. Press archives are very bad companions for a political career and the public are much more mature than you sometimes think.