The Ebre recovers from the pandemic before the Camp de Tarragona

Terres de l'Ebre, Pla de Lleida, the Barcelona metropolitan area and the central regions are the areas of Catalonia that are recovering faster from the pandemic, while Camp de Tarragona, the mountain regions and those of Girona, with a greater weight of tourism and a greater drop in 2020, do so at a slower pace.

This is the diagnosis of the 2022 BBVA Regional Economic Yearbook, presented yesterday and which analyzes the behavior of the Catalan economy as a whole and by territorial axes in 2021.

The data show, according to the author of the study, the emeritus professor of Applied Economics at the UAB Josep Oliver, that the counties and areas of Catalonia "more industrialized and with greater manufacturing weight", and therefore with less relative weight in the sector services, are recovering faster from the consequences of Covid-19 than others with a greater tourist weight.

In his opinion, these areas could already recover the GDP levels prior to the pandemic this year, while the regions of Camp de Tarragona or the regions of Girona and the mountains have questioned whether they can do so this year, so they should wait for 2023.

The study recalls that the Catalan GDP plummeted by 11.7% in 2020 due to the pandemic. This contraction was greater than that of similar European regions, such as Hannover (-4.2%), Baden-Württemberg (-5.4%), Lombardy (-8.7%) or Veneto (-9.5%). Oliver said that in 2020 the Catalan economy went into "collapse", with an unprecedented drop in GDP in decades.

In 2021 the Catalan economy grew by 5.8%, strong growth but "insufficient" to recover the ground lost in 2020, explained Oliver, who highlighted that last year the Camp de Tarragona (+7.4%) and the Eix Girona (+6.9%) registered higher increases in their GDP, thanks to the gradual recovery of tourism, although they had also suffered a greater drop in 2020.

The balance for the 2019-2021 biennium reflects a drop in Catalan GDP of 6.6% on average, but shows that the recovery has not been homogeneous throughout the territory. The metropolitan area of ​​Barcelona (-6.4%), the central regions (5.6%), Terres de l'Ebre (-5.3%) and Pla de Lleida (-4.9%) registered more falls milder than the Catalan average.

On the other hand, the mountain counties (-15.6%), the Camp de Tarragona (-8.1%) and the Girona counties (-8.4%) present slightly worse data than the Catalan average.

Despite the fact that in terms of GDP Catalonia has not yet recovered the levels of 2019, it already did so in terms of employment in 2021, thanks to a membership that grew by 3.6%, to 3.4 million euros. affiliates, and to recover the level of jobs of 2019.

«The Mediterranean Corridor cries out to heaven»

The Minister of Territories of the Generalitat, Juli Fernández, considers that the level of execution of the Mediterranean Corridor between Barcelona and Tarragona "cries out to heaven". This was stated by him yesterday Wednesday in the parliamentary commission of Territories, in which he reviewed the main strategic lines of his ministry for the remainder of the legislature. Minister Fernández was sure that "very broad alliances" could be built in the coming months, even at a European level, to promote the Corridor and have the capacity to transform the current freight transport model. As he explained, the "situation of the country conditions the department's priorities," which he linked to the climate emergency and the housing emergency, among others. In this sense, he stressed that infrastructures must contribute to social cohesion, competitiveness and prosperity of the Catalan economy, as well as being "a key tool against climate change".

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