The Cyprus recession deepened in the fourth quarter, according to the flash estimate from the statistical service, Cystat, and marked its sixth quarter of consecutive, quarter on quarter decline.
On a seasonally adjusted basis real GDP contracted over the previous quarter by 1% in the fourth quarter, having dropped by 0.7% in the third quarter and 0.8% in the second.
Compared with the same period of 2011, real GDP declined in the fourth quarter by 3% (or 3.1% on a non-seasonally adjusted basis), its steepest decline in the recession to date.
Cystat said that the main decline came from construction, manufacturing, retail and wholesale trade, transport, public administration, and recreational and cultural activities.
Legal and accounting activities, which have been the main job-creators in recent years, continued to show positive growth.
The fourth quarter of 2012 was when concerns that the outgoing president, Demetris Christofias, would not sign a bailout deal reached their height.
In the end, a fudge was engineered whereby Christofias agreed to the bailout terms “in principle” and parliament passed all but one of the measures immediately thereafter, leaving the actual signature of the deal to the incoming president.
However, the absence of a signature also meant continued uncertainty and growing opposition in EU circles to a bailout that falls only on the EU taxpayer. Therefore there is little prospect that the Q1 figures will show an improvement.
Presidential elections will be held on Sunday and, if no candidate wins more than 50% of the vote, in a second round on 24 February.
The current favourite is Nicos Anastasiades, leader of the Democratic Rally (DISY).
Get all the latest news and videos in your inbox. Register FREE