The cook-off organised by the City of Luxembourg is a subtle reminder that when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade… well maybe this time something more special to celebrate National day followin...
A view of the Kirchberg business district from the Red Bridge. Library photo: Jan Hanrion
Luxembourg’s gross domestic product should grow by 6% in 2021, according to national forecaster Statec, more than making up for pandemic losses in 2020.
At the start of the coronavirus outbreak and with the country in lockdown, Statec had anticipated the economy to contract by between 6 to 12%. But mid-2021, the numbers are looking more promising, with Statec reporting a drop in GDP of just 1.3% for 2020.
For this year, the national statistics office expects GDP to grow 6%, it said in a report published on 8 June, followed by 3.5% growth in 2022.
“The economic indicators available for the first quarter of 2021 are on the whole rather positive, with the notable exception of the hotel and restaurant sector,” said Statec. The hospitality sector was largely closed except for take-out, delivery or room service until 7 April, when terraces were allowed to reopen.
Indoor dining resumed in May for small tables and with rapid antigen testing. Under new rules expected to be passed by parliament this week, most restrictions on indoor dining will be lifted with the introduction of the so-called covid check, a system that allows restaurants to ascertain whether a customer is immune against the coronavirus or has tested negative.
Despite the economic rebound, unemployment is expected to stay around 6%, Statec projects, saying that some uncertainty remains as to the effects of the pandemic on the most-affected sectors in the longer-term.
This, too, however, was an improvement from an earlier estimate made in March this year of an unemployment rate of around 7% until 2024.
As economic activity picks up, Statec also expects Luxembourg’s greenhouse gas emissions to increase. Included for the first time in its economic forecast, Statec said emissions shrank 17% in 2020 but should grow 2.5% in both 2021 and 2022.
Previously indicated by finance minister Pierre Gramegna (DP), public finances are also on the road of recovery. A deficit in the state’s budget of 4.1% in 2020 should shrink to -0.7% by the end of this year, Statec said, predicting a positive balance sheet for 2022.