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By NAN Staff Writer

News Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Thurs. June 10, 2021: The Caribbean’s economy is projected to grow this year despite the beating its tourism sector has taken this past year due to the pandemic.

That’s the word from the World Bank in its June 2021 Global Economic Prospects.

The Bank forecasts an increase in economic activity of 4.7 percent this year.

“In the Caribbean, where COVID-19 caseloads have been relatively low, growth is anticipated to expand 4.7%, although the outlook for most tourism-reliant economies has been revised downward since January with the recovery in tourism still sluggish,” the Bank said.  

The report forecasts the highest growth of 23 percent, however, for Guyana with other Caribbean countries lagging far behind.

St. Lucia, with a projected 8.1 percent growth, ranks second while St. Vincent and the Grenadines, despite the hit it has taken from the La Soufriere volcano, is forecast to grow by 6.1 percent this year, according to the report, the third highest in the region.

The growth for the Dominican Republic and Barbados is forecast at 4.8 percent, the fourth highest regionally.

Here’s where other Caribbean countries rank, according to the report:

Grenada – 4.9 percent projected growth

Belize – 4.2 percent projected growth

The Bahamas – 4.0 percent projected growth

Jamaica – 3.2 percent projected growth

Dominica – 2.5 percent projected growth

Haiti – 2.0 percent projected growth

Suriname – 1.3 percent projected growth.

Globally, the bank said the world’s economy is expected to expand 5.6% in 2021, the fastest post-recession pace in 80 years, largely on strong rebounds from a few major economies.

Despite the recovery, global output will be about 2% below pre-pandemic projections by the end of this year. Per capita income losses will not be unwound by 2022 for about two-thirds of emerging market and developing economies. Among low-income economies, where vaccination has lagged, the effects of the pandemic have reversed poverty reduction gains and aggravated insecurity and other long-standing challenges.

“While there are welcome signs of global recovery, the pandemic continues to inflict poverty and inequality on people in developing countries around the world,” said World Bank Group President David Malpass. “Globally coordinated efforts are essential to accelerate vaccine distribution and debt relief, particularly for low-income countries. As the health crisis eases, policymakers will need to address the pandemic’s lasting effects and take steps to spur green, resilient, and inclusive growth while safeguarding macroeconomic stability.”

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