The EU’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to contract 4.3% in the third quarter of this year on an annual basis amid COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the bloc’s statistical authority Eurostat’s flash estimate on Friday, the GDP also dropped 4.4% in the eurozone in the July-September period, versus the same quarter last year.

The eurozone/euro area or EA19 represents member states that use the single currency — euro — while the EU27 includes all member countries of the bloc.

The largest decline among member countries, of which GDP data are available, were expected for Spain (8.7%), Romania (6%), and Czechia (5.8%), while there were no positive expectations for any countries.

Meanwhile, the EU and the eurozone’s GDP figures improved by 11.6% and 12.6% month-on-month in the third quarter, respectively.

The EU and the eurozone economies posted GDP declines by 11.8% and 11.4% in the second quarter, and 3.3% and 3.7% in the first quarter of this year, on a yearly basis.

The union’s statistical department also expected that the unemployment rate will post declines both in the EU and eurozone.

After originating in China last December, COVID-19 has claimed over 1.29 million lives, and more than 52.8 million people have contracted the virus globally.

European economy has been deeply affected by the pandemic.

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