Slow vaccination campaign could cost Europe close to 90 billion euros
Saturday, 13 February 2021
The slow vaccination campaign in the EU, compared to Israel, the United States or the United Kingdom, could cause Europe’s economy to lose close to 90 billion euros, if it is not speeded up, according to economists at the Euler Hermes insurance company.
Europe is five weeks behind on vaccination and if this is not corrected, the economic cost will be higher than the savings made from cheap vaccines, Euler Hermes warned.
To reach the target set by the European Commission, of vaccinating 70% of the population by summer, vaccinations will need to be increased six times over, according to the insurance company, which predicts that at the current rhythm, herd immunity will not be attained before the end of next year.
According to the economists, each additional week of restrictions due to the measures against the spread of the novel Coronavirus will reduce the economy by 0.4% on a quarterly basis. This would mean a 2% drop, equivalent to 90 billion euros, for the year.
For Belgium, the weekly economic cost of the restrictions is estimated at 600 million euros.
Euler Hermes also warns that, in addition to the economic cost, the delays in vaccination could lead to a loss of confidence in the European project, as well as increased polarisation and greater political uncertainty in Europe.