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TIRANA (Albania), March 27 (SeeNews) – The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (WIIW) said on Wednesday that Albania, Kosovo and Moldova will be the fastest growing economies among 23 countries of Central, East and Southeast Europe (CESEE) in the 2019-2021 period.
The slowest economic growth in CESEE in 2019-2021 will be recorded in Russia, Belarus and Turkey, WIIW said in a press release.
The boom experienced by much of the region in 2017-2018 period is over, the statement noted adding that growth rates will mostly trend lower in the next two or three years.
“Weaker global growth, US protectionism, Brexit and ongoing problems in the eurozone represent a serious threat to CESEE’s export-reliant economies,” WIIW added.
WIIW projected economic growth for the group of 23 CESEE countries at 1.8% in 2019, down from 3.2% forecast in 2018.
In 2020 and 2021, the region's economic growth is seen accelerating to 2.5% and 2.7%, respectively.
“The challenges to medium- and long-term growth in CESEE are formidable,” the statement said, adding that demographic projections indicate a collapse in population that is unprecedented outside times of war and famine.
“Authoritarianism, state capture and interference in the independence of institutions are all on the rise. Generally low educational standards, levels of network readiness and ICT capabilities (in comparison with Western Europe) could hamstring CESEE’s ability to integrate into a digitalised global economy,” WIIW said.
The Vienna Institute also said policy-makers and firms must act now to ensure that the region is not condemned to a low- or zero-growth future.
Details on the economic growth forecasts of WIIW for Southeast Europe (SEE) countries follow:
The CESEE region includes 11 EU-member states, six Western Balkan countries, four members of the Commonwealth of Independent States, as well as Turkey and Ukraine.