MADRID, 29th April, 2016 (WAM) The Spanish economy grew by 0.8 percent in the first quarter of 2016 compared with the final quarter of 2015, according to data published on Friday by Spain’s Statistical Office (INE).

The INE also said the country’s economy grew by 3.4 percent year-on-year, which means Spain’s economy has grown for nine consecutive quarters year-on-year.

The figures provided by the INE on Friday are higher than the forecast published by the Bank of Spain that had predicted a 0.7 percent growth between January and March. Meanwhile, the Spanish government forecast a 2.7 percent growth for 2016 and a 2.4 percent growth for 2017.

Spain is the fourth largest economy in the Euro Zone and the fifth biggest economy in the European Union. The country has a strong and diverse manufacturing industry and is one of the biggest tourist destinations in the world