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Europe is the sick man of the global economy

Behind the news


The continent is suffering from a bout of economic long Covid

by John Rapley

He needs a dollar. Credit: Getty

The world economy, which was meant to bounce back to life after the pandemic, is showing signs of persistent illness. The World Bank’s recent Global Economic Prospects paints a gloomy picture of slowing growth, marking what it calls a “wretched milestone”: not only a world economy that is growing more slowly than before the pandemic, but one expected to grow at the slowest rate in three decades: 2.4% this year, with hopefully a slight improvement in 2025. Worse, investment is expected to rise at 3.7% a year, barely half the average of the last decade, which risks locking in slow growth.

While almost everywhere is feeling the burn, the global…

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