Back

Country Reports

Austria Country Report

Content provided by
IHS Markit Logo

Risk Level

Low
Moderate
Elevated
High
Very High
Severe
Extreme

Overview

Executive Summary

Following an early general election in September 2019, the government formation process concluded in January 2020 with an ÖVP-Greens alliance. There were considerable hurdles to overcome before a deal could be agreed, requiring compromises by both parties.Government stability relies on internal unity within the Green Party and overcoming potential conflicts due to power imbalances stemming from the ÖVP's far larger share of the vote (37.48% versus 13.9% for the Greens). Any attempts by the ÖVP to delay ambitious regulatory reforms favoured by the Greens would put Chancellor Sebastian Kurz's pragmatic alliance at risk.Although the Austrian economy experienced less of a slowdown than most of its European peers (including key trading partner Germany) during 2018–19, the ramifications of the globally spreading coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) virus are now expected to trigger a period of negative economic growth during the second and possibly the third quarter of 2020 owing to supply-chain interruptions, quarantine measures, and a hit to consumer confidence generally. Year-on-year growth will approach zero in the second half of 2020.The first public-sector surpluses in more than 40 years in 2018 and probably 2019, which have been enabled by the tax revenue boost from strong economic growth in recent years and the sharp decline in debt-servicing costs as interest rates fell to around zero, are giving the government considerable leeway to provide fiscal stimulus, as it seems increasingly needed to offset at least part of the dampening impact of the COVID-19 virus on economic activity in 2020.Austria faces a moderate risk of terrorist attacks primarily affecting major urban centres, especially Vienna. The most likely form of attack is one of low capability, for instance using a vehicle or rudimentary weapons such as knives, carried out by a lone actor or small cells inspired but not necessarily directed by militant non-state groups such as the Islamic State.
Last update: March 10, 2020

Operational Outlook

Austria's operational environment is likely to remain stable and attractive for domestic and international competitors during the current administrative term. Further structural reforms to reduce administrative burdens for businesses are likely to be introduced. Overall, Austria has one of Europe's lowest unemployment rates and industrial action is rare. The country maintains strong trade links with its neighbours in the EU and the Western Balkans. Communication networks and infrastructure are of a high standard, with extensions planned in the aviation sector in particular.

Last update: February 29, 2020

Terrorism

Elevated

The risk of jihadist terrorist attacks in Austria is lower than in many other Western European countries, including neighbouring Germany. However, there is a moderate risk of both low-capability and more sophisticated terrorist attacks launched by lone actors or small cells. Moreover, the collapse of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria means that a number of foreign fighters are likely to enter Europe, heightening the risk of attacks. Soft targets such as transport hubs, music and sport venues, shopping centres, or public spaces near tourist attractions or in city centres are likely to be most at risk.

Last update: February 20, 2020

Crime

Overall crime levels are likely to remain low. Systematic, large-scale violent and armed crime is particularly rare. Petty crime affects Vienna and other tourist centres, but is nevertheless limited. Drug-related crime has been targeted by increased surveillance of dealer locations in Vienna, where drug trafficking has gone up notably in recent years. Racially motivated attacks occur periodically and remain a risk following increased migration to Austria in recent years. Organised crime groups are mostly multinational and mainly focus on trafficking people, arms, vehicles, and drugs.

Last update: March 5, 2020

Social Stability

Elevated

Austria is an internally stable country and overall civil unrest risks are lower than in several other European countries, including France and Germany. Following the right-wing FPÖ's move into opposition, anti-government protests are likely to decrease Anti-EU, anti-Islam, and anti-refugee protests, as well as counter-demonstrations, remain moderately likely. In addition, environmental activism organised by groups such as Fridays for Future and Extinction Rebellion is likely to continue throughout 2020.

Last update: February 19, 2020

Health Risk

Low

Vaccines Required to Enter the Country

No vaccinations are required to enter the country.

Vaccines Recommended for All Travelers

Routine vaccinations: Consult your doctor to ensure all routine vaccinations - such as for diphtheria, tetanus, polio, tuberculosis, influenza, measles, mumps, pertussis, rubella, varicella, etc. - are up to date (include booster shots if necessary).

Vaccines Recommended for Some Travelers

Hepatitis A: The vaccine is given in two doses, six months apart, and is nearly 100 percent effective. The WHO recommends the vaccine be integrated into national routine immunization schedules for children aged one year or older.

Hepatitis B: The WHO recommends that all infants receive their first dose of vaccine as soon as possible after birth, preferably within 24 hours. The birth dose should be followed by two or three doses to complete the primary series. Routine booster doses are not routinely recommended for any age group.

Rabies: The rabies vaccination is typically only recommended for travel to remote areas and if the traveler will be at high risk of exposure (e.g. undertaking activities that will bring them into contact with dogs, cats, bats, or other mammals). The vaccination is administered in three doses over a three-to-four week period. Post exposure prophylaxis is also available and should be administered as soon as possible following contact with an animal suspected of being infected (e.g. bites and scratches).

Last update: April 5, 2019

Natural Risks

Very high
Last update: April 5, 2019

Transportation

Moderate

Austria has highway and road infrastructure meeting the western European standard and public transportation is well equipped and easily accessible. Mountain roads are well tended, but winter weather can see snow blocking some areas. Snow tires and other equipment is recommended for driving in mountainous areas.

Last update: April 5, 2019

Practical Information

Climate

Austria's climate is continental in the north and the east of the country, with heavy rain in the summer. Temperatures fluctuate significantly between seasons and snowstorms are common in winter months in the west of the country (mountainous region).

Useful Numbers

Country Code: +43
Emergency Services: 112
Police: 133
Fire Department: 122
Ambulance: 144

Electricity

Voltage: 230 V ~ 50 Hz

Outlets:

Last update: December 6, 2019