The Barcelona Chamber of Commerce has predicted this Thursday that the Catalan economy will recover the level prior to the covid-19 crisis at the end of 2022 , and estimates that it will grow by 6% this year and 6.1% in 2022.
This public law corporation, which today presented its report on the Catalan situation for the first quarter of 2021, therefore predicts that to recover the collapse of the Catalan GDP suffered in 2020 (-11.5%) will require two full years , already that in 2021 half of the land will be recovered and the other half, in 2022.
The Chamber believes that although the first quarter of the year has been weaker than expected due to the restrictions of the pandemic, the recovery will be noticeable as of the second quarter and will give an important acceleration, especially in the third, with the arrival of summer.
The report, drawn up from estimates made by the Chamber’s research service and by the AQR-Lab team of the UB, estimates that the third wave of the pandemic caused the Catalan GDP to fall two tenths in the first quarter of 2021 in the comparison with the previous one, but predicts that in the second quarter it will advance by 1.2% compared to the three previous months.
In terms of employment, the diagnosis of this entity is that employment will recover this year by 3.8% , therefore below the expected increase for the Catalan GDP, since the ERTE prevented the fall in employment from being directly proportional to the collapse of GDP.
However, the forecast of the Chamber is that, even using the ertes , the unemployment rate could grow one point this year in Catalonia, up to 13.5%, to fall again to 12.7% in 2022.
Despite the uncertainties that the pandemic still generates, this corporation sees “reasons for optimism”, although its president, Mònica Roca , has said that to recover the pre-crisis levels by the end of 2022, five conditions must be met. Achieve group immunity this year, recover around 50% or 60% of the activity of the tourism sector ; a rebound in private consumption favored by the savings of families not affected by the crisis; agility in granting direct aid to companies and the self-employed, and taking advantage of European funds are these five factors that should lead to recovery.
According to the head of the Chamber’s studies service, Joan Ramon Rovira , the business confidence indicator prepared by the Chamber together with Idescat reveals a more intense recovery in the second quarter of the year in the demarcations of Barcelona and Girona.
The president of the Chamber has expressed her wish that the next Government be “stable, strong and cohesive”, and maintains the “hope” that it will approve the budgets for the Generalitat for 2021.