In January, there will (I think) be just one country that is not just a member of:
- euro zone and
- NATO but also meets those clubs' rules (spending 2% of GDP on defence, and meeting the common currency zone's budget deficit, debt and inflation criteria).
It's Estonia (I have tried to check this but the Economist's brilliant research department does not work at weekends so I am not completely certain).
That's not exactly new though I may be the first person to have spotted it. But what is new is the astonishing recovery in the Estonian economy. I know that month-by-month industrial production figures can be misleading, but these figures are truly startling. Industrial production up 31.1% year on year (compared with a mere 21.7% in August). Exports of manufactured goods were up 54% (against an August figure of 41%). GDP growth this year. As this chart shows, much of the ground lost during the recession has already been caught up.
The volume index and trend of production in manufacturing, January 2000 – September 2010 (2005 = 100)