Recession will last longer, says EU


Euro coins

The European Union is predicting that the economy of the 17 eurozone countries will be growing solidly by the end of this year even though it expects the recession to last longer than it did just three months ago.

In its winter forecast, published today, the EU Commission says the eurozone is likely to contract a further 0.3% this year, in contrast to its previous prediction of 0.1% growth.

However, it says the retreat masks an improving trend. By the fourth quarter of 2013, it says the eurozone should be 0.7% bigger than the same period in 2012.

Olli Rehn, the Commission's top economic official, says recent "decisive" policy actions are "paving the way for a return to recovery". (European Commission)

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