The European Union enlargement towards Eastern Europe has resulted in 39 billion euros (43.4 billion U.S. dollars) flowing back into the Austrian economy since 2006, a new study has shown.
The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (WIIW) report, published by Der Standard newspaper on Friday, showed investments from seven such countries alone brought 31 billion euros back to Austria between 2006 and 2014.
Of this 8.3 billion euros were re-invested, resulting in a net gain of 22.7 billion euros for Austria. The most profitable return flows were from the Czech Republic, amounting to 6.7 billion euros, followed by Hungary with 3.8 billion euros.
The report said the close geographical proximity has allowed trade volumes to expand dramatically, with goods exports increasing 72 percent since the fifth EU enlargement in 2004 to reach 25.3 billion euros.
Exports have also been increasing more rapidly than imports, a situation that favors the Austrian trade balance.
The WIIW said it expects the trend to continue in the years to come, an expected 3 percent GDP growth in these newer EU states potentially also providing growth impulses for the presently sluggish Austrian economy.