The Israeli economy, staggered by the coronavirus crisis, will likely not return to its robust former self until 2023, according to a forecast released by the Finance Ministry on Sunday.
The ministry’s chief economist said that a shrinkage of 7.2% can be expected through 2020, and that recovery will remain sluggish at best unless lower infection rates make an accelerated reopening possible.
In that better-case scenario, the economy would be 5.9% smaller in 2020 and grow 5.7% in 2021.
Similarly, unemployment will reflect the overall recovery. Under current conditions, the chief economist foresees 9.7% unemployment at the end of 2020 with a slight drop to 8% in 2021. But re-imposition of lockdowns could raise it to 15% at the end of 2020 and 12.4% in 2021.