EU economy to expand, bouncing back from pandemic crisis

·1 min read

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union economy is set to bounce back strongly this year after the deep coronavirus recession and member states are forecast to have recouped the ground lost by the end of next year.

In its latest forecast Wednesday, the EU’s executive commission significantly upgraded its predictions for economic growth.

It said that growth in the 27-nation bloc is predicted to expand by 4.2% this year, a significant uptick from a February prediction of 3.7%.

"The shadow of COVID-19 is beginning to lift from Europe’s economy," said EU Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni. “After a weak start to the year, we project strong growth in both 2021 and 2022.”

The Commission highlighted the fact that the vaccination drive across the bloc is starting to reach cruising speed and is a a driving factor for a better outlook this year.

For next year, when growth is now predicted to move to 4.4 % instead of the February prediction of 3.9 %, the member states will also start to see the impact of the first payments of the bloc massive 750 billion euro ($910 billion) recovery fund.

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