WORLD Dutch economy shrinks most ever as Covid hits


Dutch economy shrinks most ever as Covid hits


22:01, February 16, 2021

The Netherlands took its biggest economic hit on record due to the coronavirus pandemic, although it was less badly affected than many other European countries.

A man looks at a windmill in Zaandijk, the Netherlands, Aug. 7, 2020. (Photo: Xinhua)

The Dutch economy, the fifth biggest in the eurozone, shrank 3.8 percent in 2020, the sharpest contraction ever measured, the country's statistics office said.

The yearly fall was bigger even than the economic crisis year of 2009 when the economy shrank 3.7 percent.

The Netherlands pursued an "intelligent lockdown" policy for much of 2020 with far more relaxed coronavirus rules than most of its European counterparts.

However the country is now under its tightest restrictions since the start of the pandemic, with a nighttime curfew and all non-essential shops, bars, restaurants and secondary schools closed.

The Dutch figures were less than the eurozone which shrank by 6.8 percent in 2020.

That figure was itself less than expected given the devastating consequences of the pandemic.

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