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Economic outlook seen brightening but dangers remain

Economic outlook seen brightening but dangers remain

People wearing face masks to protect against the spread of the coronavirus walk through China Town in Yokohama, Kanagawa prefecture, near Tokyo, Tuesday, Dec 1, 2020. (Photo: AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

PARIS: The world economy will bounce back to its pre-pandemic levels by the end of next year, a global watchdog predicted on Tuesday (Dec 1), though that recovery will be uneven across the countries and big risks remain.

In a wide-ranging report on the economy, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said that progress on coronavirus vaccines means that the outlook has improved for the first time since the pandemic began.

“The road ahead is brighter, but challenging,” wrote Laurence Boone, chief economist at the OECD, in the report.

It predicts the global economy will shrink about 4.2 per cent this year and rebound by the same rate in 2021 before growing 3.7 per cent the following year.

China, which has brought its virus infections under control better than many major economies, will account for a big part of that economic recovery, while Europe, Japan and the US will lag, the OECD said.

The organisation, which advises countries on economic policy, said that governments should continue to support people who have been hit hardest by the pandemic and the restrictions on public life and businesses.

It recommends investing public money in areas that deliver long-term benefits like health care, education, reducing inequality and fighting climate change. Global cooperation is sorely needed to maximise the impact of government efforts to bring the economy back to health.

“International cooperation has faltered in recent years, just when it was needed more than ever,” Boone said.

Source: AP/kv

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