The European Union predicted on Wednesday "a recession of historic proportion this year" due to the impact of the coronavirus.
The European Commission said in its Spring economic forecast that EU economy is predicted to contract by 7.5% this year and grow about 6% in 2021 if countries continue to ease their lockdowns.
"It is now quite clear that the EU has entered the deepest economic recession in its history," EU Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni said, adding that "economic activity in the EU dropped by around one third practically overnight" as the virus hit.
The coronavirus pandemic has hit consumer spending, industrial output, investment, trade, capital flows, and supply chains. The unemployment rate is expected to rise from 6.7% last year to 9% in 2020 before falling to around 8% in 2021.
? More than 1.1 million people across Europe have contracted the virus. More than 137,000 have died, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.