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Coronavirus impact on CESEE to be worst since global financial crisis, institute says

The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (WIIW) said on March 17 that countries in Central, East and Southeast Europe (CESEE) are set for their worst year since the global financial crisis in 2007-2008 due to the coronavirus pandemic, regional news portal SeeNews reports.

The extent of the impact will vary by country, depending on specific areas of vulnerability, WIIW said in an executive summary of its latest economic forecast for the region.

Countries with higher levels of trade integration with China (particularly CIS members such as Moldova) or Italy, but especially Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania and Slovenia, will be worse affected, the institute noted.

Countries reliant on tourism, like Croatia, Slovenia, Albania and Montenegro will also be greatly affected.

“The capacity of healthcare systems to cope is also likely to vary considerably across the region,” WIIW added, SeeNews said.