In a November 2013 report on Poland’s economy the IMF found that economic activity was starting to strengthen after a protracted cyclical downturn. Slow to zero growth among Poland’s key trading partners in the first half of 2013 weakened the economy, but trade picked up in the second half of the year. GDP growth for 2013 was 1.3% and is expected to rise to 2.7% in 2014, driven by strengthening consumer demand. Poland has a flexible credit line with the IMF that will help to buffer it against downside risks to growth arising from possible turbulence in global financial markets or continued flat to low growth in the European Union. The problems of 2013 pushed the country’s fiscal deficit to 4.6% of GDP for the year, though according to the IMF that should fall to 3.5% in 2014. Poland is reducing its pension promise to the public sector, which will lower the public debt by as much as 9% of GDP. The government hopes to achieve a fiscal deficit of no more than 1% by 2016.