The Azerbaijani economy may return to pre-pandemic levels in the second half of 2022,
World Bank economists predict a gradual economic recovery and, according to current forecasts, GDP growth rates this year are expected at 3%, and in 2022 - 4%. However, actual growth rates may outpace WB forecasts, which is possible due to the high rates of vaccination in Azerbaijan, as well as the growth rates of government spending and investment in the restoration of the liberated territories, said Sarah Michael.
In her opinion, the restoration work in the territories liberated from the Armenian occupation, namely the reintegration of these regions into the country's economy, will increase the economic growth rates.
It will also affect the region's potential, since with the opening of communications, transport routes, and in general, with the lifting of the blockade, a significant impetus will be given to regional development, the WB representative said. For example, improved transport links between Azerbaijan and Turkey, as well as with other countries, will significantly increase the prospects for Azerbaijan's transformation into a logistics hub.
The Azerbaijani government forecasts GDP growth at 3.4% for 2021 and expects it to be 4.8% in 2022. Azerbaijan's GDP declined by 4.3% in 2020 due to pandemic-related restrictions, and the drop in oil production following the OPEC+ deal.