Record fall in G20 GDP in first quarter of 2020

Following the introduction of COVID-19 containment measures across the world, real gross domestic product (GDP) in the G20 area fell by 3.4 % in the first quarter of 2020, the largest contraction since the time series started in 1998, according to provisional estimates. As a comparison, GDP fell by only 1.5 % in the first quarter of 2009 at the height of the financial crisis.

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Among G20 economies, those that introduced stringent lockdowns measures earliest saw the largest contractions in GDP in the first quarter of 2020: China (by minus 9.8 %), and France and Italy (minus 5.3 %, in both countries).

GDP also fell sharply in Germany (by minus 2.2 %), Canada (minus 2.1 %) and the United Kingdom (minus 2.0 %).

GDP also contracted in Brazil (minus 1.5 %), the United States and Korea (minus 1.3 %, in both countries) and Mexico (minus 1.2 %).

The contraction was less pronounced in Indonesia (minus 0.7 %), Japan (minus 0.6 %) and Australia (minus 0.3 %).

India (0.7 %) and Turkey (0.6 %) were the only two G20 economies recording positive growth in the first quarter of 2020.

Year-on-year GDP in the G20 area contracted by (minus 1.5 %) in the first quarter of 2020, following growth of 2.8  % in the previous quarter. Among G20 economies, Turkey recorded the highest annual growth (4.4 %), while China recorded the largest annual contraction (minus 6.8 %).

Note: As a consequence of measures put in place by governments to reduce the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), many statistical agencies are facing unprecedented collection, compilation and methodological challenges to develop indicators across a number of domains. To address these challenges, the statistical community is developing guidance, both conceptual and practical, to help ensure the continued delivery of timely and reliable statistics. However, in some cases, there will inevitably be an impact on quality and, as such, the statistics included in this press release may be subject to larger, and more frequent, than normal revisions.