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Best EU Economy in Year of Covid Was Bloc’s Worst-Hit After 2008

  • Lithuania forecast to boast bloc’s smallest GDP drop this year
  • Performance down to years of fiscal prudence, logistics gains
People walk across nearly empty Cathedral Square in Vilnius, Lithuania on April 3.
People walk across nearly empty Cathedral Square in Vilnius, Lithuania on April 3.Photographer: Paulius Peleckis/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The European Union’s worst-hit economy in the wake of the global financial crisis is looking like the bloc’s least affected during the coronavirus pandemic.

Lithuania suffered the deepest recession in 2009 as it became a testing ground for the harsh austerity that later ravaged Greece. This time, the European Commission reckons it will notch the shallowest contraction of all, with forecasts this month pointing to a dip in gross domestic product of just 2.2%.