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  • GDP (current US$)

    Economic activity in the emerging and developing economies of Europe and Central Asia is estimated to have contracted by 2 percent in 2020, in the wake of disruptions related to COVID-19.

    The pandemic is expected to erase at least five years of per capita income gains in about one-sixth of the region’s economies and raise the poverty headcount. Economies with strong trade or financial linkages to the euro area and those heavily dependent on services and tourism were the hardest hit.

    The pace of recovery in 2021 is projected to be faster than originally anticipated, at 3.6 percent, as firming external demand and stabilizing industrial commodity prices partly offset a recent flareup in new COVID-19 cases.

    Growth is then expected to rise to 3.8 percent in 2022, as the effects of the pandemic gradually wane and the recovery in trade and investment gathers momentum. The outlook remains highly uncertain and growth could be weaker than envisioned if the pandemic takes longer than expected to fade, external financing conditions tighten, policy uncertainty spikes, or geopolitical tensions escalate again.

    Regional Economic Update Spring 2021

    Updated 30 March 2021


    Learn more about how the World Bank Group is coordinating with partners to accelerate the international response and support countries to manage the global COVID-19 pandemic.

  • COVID-19 Response

    As countries around the world work to contain the spread and impact of coronavirus (COVID-19), the World Bank Group is taking broad, fast action to help developing countries strengthen their pandemic response and health care systems.

    The World Bank Group will deploy globally as much as $160 billion over the next 15 months, tailored to the health, economic and social shocks countries are facing. In addition to ongoing health support, operations will emphasize social protection, poverty alleviation and policy-based financing.

    World Bank Group support will assess needs and prioritize the poorest countries, those with high risk and low capacity, and those in fragile and conflict settings. Our goal is to: protect the poorest and most vulnerable households; protect jobs and businesses; shorten the time to recovery; and support an economic recovery that is broad based and sustainable.

    Find out more: World Bank Group and COVID-19 (coronavirus)

    Long-term Regional Strategy

    The World Bank’s regional strategy for Europe and Central Asia focuses on these priority areas:

    • Boosting Human Capital
    • Enabling Markets
    • Green Transition
    • Building & Strenghtening Institutions
  • Results

    We work with client countries to fight poverty and boost shared prosperity by helping them build more responsible institutions, increase private investment, improve service delivery, upgrade infrastructure, protect the environment, support human development, and empower marginalized groups.

    In order to deliver integrated solutions that help countries address their development challenges, we regularly look at where we are achieving results and making an impact. By measuring and monitoring those results, we can then improve the way we support our clients and achieve better development outcomes.

    Find out more about our results in Europe and Central Asia.

    Reimbursable Advisory Services (RAS)

    Middle-income countries interested in highly specific knowledge services that exceed what the Bank can finance from its own resources are increasingly accessing Bank technical expertise using Reimbursable Advisory Services (RAS).

    Analytical Work Highlights

    In addition to its financial products and RASs, the Bank produces important research about critical issues in the region. Through its analytical work, the World Bank aims to bring global knowledge and adapt it to the needs of ECA countries.

    Find out more about our publications and research on Europe and Central Asia.

  • European Union, European Commission, and other institutions

    The World Bank’s ECA region has a strategic partnership with the European Union (EU), and is working with the European Commission (EC) and European international financial institutions (IFIs) to improve the capacity of ECA’s EU-member clients to absorb EU funds.

    The Bank works closely together with EU institutions, European IFIs (European Investment Bank [EIB] and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development [EBRD]), and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as part of the second Vienna Initiative, which aims to improve banking systems and coordination among banking regulators in EU and non-EU countries.

    The World Bank Group, the EBRD, and the EIB Group came together in November 2012 for a new Joint International Financial Institution (IFI) Action Plan. One of the most important priorities under the Action Plan was to ensure continued financing for SMEs that are key drivers of innovation and job creation in the region.

    ECA works on Roma inclusion across the region in collaboration with various partners, including the European Commission, the Roma Education Fund, and a variety of national Roma agencies.

    The Bank is also working with the EurAsian Economic Community’s (EURASEC) Anti-Crisis Fund and with the Eurasian Development Bank to provide parallel financing for low-income ECA countries.


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