Half of Austrians unimpressed by crisis comeback concerns

Only three per cent of Austrians say they are not at all worried about another crisis.Pollster Market said today (Thurs) just three in 100 citizens had no concerns at all about a comeback of the recession in the foreseeable future. The agency added that 50 per cent of Austrians were “rather not worried” while six per cent admitted big concerns.Market polled more than 500 Austrians older than 16 for the survey. Market’s study comes as a growing number of economists warn that Europe must do more to fend off another debt and cash crisis owing to the struggles of Eurozone members like Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal.Economic indicators show that businesspeople in the country are in an upbeat mood as think tanks predict a further recovery of the domestic economy.Companies based Austria exported goods worth 109.2 billion Euros last year, up by 16.5 per cent compared to the year before. The value of imported products rose by 16.3 per cent to 113.5 billion Euros.The country’s jobless rate ranged between four and five per cent in the past two years. This rate allowed Austria to label itself as a role model for employment policies in the European Union (EU) as most of the EU’s 27 member states had done much worse since the outbreak of the economic downturn in autumn 2008. Only the Netherlands achieved a lower unemployment rate in some months of 2009 and 2010.Austria’s government of Social Democrats (SPÖ) and the People’s Party (ÖVP) was lauded by the European Commission (EC) for its decision to compensate firms for some of their losses during the crisis if they made staff into part-timers instead of sacking them. The part-time labour initiative is widely regarded as a reasonable anti-crisis measure. Germany, the continent’s most powerful economy and Austria’s main business partner, also opted for such a regime to avoid a surge of joblessness.