Cyprus: highest government deficit in EU, 4th highest government debt to GDP ratio

April 23, 2019 at 12:25pm

In 2018, Cyprus had the fourth highest government debt to GDP ratio in the EU, a Eurostat report released on Tuesday shows.

According to Eurostat, the government debt of Cyprus in 2018 was 102.5% of its GDP.

The highest debt to GDP ratios were in Greece (181.1%), Italy (132.2%) and Portugal (121.5%).

The lowest ratios of government debt to GDP were recorded in Estonia (8.4%), Luxembourg (21.4%), Bulgaria (22.6%), Czechia (32.7%), Denmark (34.1%) and Lithuania (34.2%).

Fourteen Member States had government debt ratios higher than 60% of GDP.

Government deficit

Cyprus had the largest government deficit in the EU in 2018, with -4.8%, according to Eurostat. The second largest deficied was recorded in Romania (-3%).

In 2018, Luxembourg (+2.4%), Bulgaria and Malta (both +2.0%), Germany (+1.7%), the Netherlands (+1.5%), Greece (+1.1%), Czechia and Sweden (both +0.9%), Lithuania and Slovenia (both +0.7%), Denmark (+0.5%), Croatia (+0.2%) and Austria (+0.1%) registered a government surplus, while Ireland reported a government balance.


In 2018, the government deficit and debt of both the euro area (EA19) and the EU28 decreased in relative terms compared with 2017. In the euro area the government deficit to GDP ratio fell from 1.0% in 2017 to 0.5% in 2018, and in the EU28 from 1.0% to 0.6%.

In the euro area the government debt to GDP ratio declined from 87.1% at the end of 2017 to 85.1% at the end of 2018, and in the EU28 from 81.7% to 80.0%.