Regionally Balanced Economic Development in the Recession. Economic Activity in the Provinces in 1993
Economic activity tends to exhibit a more uniform pattern in an international recession than during an upswing. In 1993, GDP growth rates by provinces were within the range of 1 percentage point (Austria total, excluding agriculture and forestry ±0.0 percent). The only exception was the Burgenland which gained almost 3 percentage points on the average rate for Austria. No clear pattern is discernible by major regions. The export industries of the western provinces were especially hard hit, and so was tourism in Vienna. Production in the energy sector, construction, and the service sectors compensated for the usual East-West gradient. The economy expanded by ½ percent in Salzburg and Tirol; it shrank by ½ percent in Vienna, Vorarlberg, and Styria. The economy stagnated in Lower and Upper Austria, and in Carinthia. The slump in manufacturing had a strong impact on the spatial pattern; with the exception of the Burgenland and Carinthia, manufacturing output remained below last year's level (manufacturing excluding energy: Austria total –2.7 percent). The export-oriented branches of the western provinces, especially the investment goods and technology-intensive intermediary goods industries, suffered severely. In Vorarlberg, the structural problems facing the apparel industry depressed manufacturing output (excluding energy –7.5 percent). In all provinces the retreat of the labor-intensive apparel industry from regions with low labor costs continued (output in total of provinces –16.4 percent). With the end of the crisis in the basic goods industries, a recovery set in, first in Upper Austria, then during the second half of the year in all provinces. The high water level of the rivers boosted energy production (Austria +3.1 percent) in the hydroelectric power stations of the West. The volume of construction (Austria –1.7 percent) did not reach the level of 1992 and showed great regional variation. Construction activity boomed in Salzburg, where the construction of nonresidential buildings expanded throughout the year, and in the Burgenland. The value of construction put in place declined in Lower Austria, Vorarlberg, and Styria. In 1993, Austria's tourism sector was again not able to escape the negative effects of the recession; an additional factor dampening foreign demand was the rise in the exchange rate, which drove up prices relative to important competitors (overnight stays by foreigners –2.9 percent). Not a single province managed to raise the number of overnight stays. Heavy losses were suffered in Vienna as well as in the lake and winter sports areas of Carinthia (–5.2 percent). In the winter, the highly developed tourism regions of the West benefited from good weather conditions, but in the summer their losses were more pronounced than those of the touristically less developed regions of eastern Austria, which were able to attract Austrian tourists. Employment stagnated in Austria, and the rate of unemployment continued to rise. In Lower Austria, the Burgenland, Salzburg, and Tirol employment gained from ½ to 1 percent, with an elastic labor supply compensating nearly all regional differences in demand. The highest unemployment rate was recorded in Carinthia (8.4 percent), Styria (8.4 percent), the Burgenland (8.1 percent), and Vienna (7.2 percent); Salzburg posted the lowest rate (4.4 percent).
Regional ausgeglichene Konjunktur in der Rezession. Die Wirtschaft in den Bundesländern 1993; Regionally Balanced Economic Development in the Recession. Economic Activity in the Provinces in 1993
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