The EU's 10 emerging economies may face a weak recovery as credit growth falters and exports and investment are slow to pick up, the World Bank said. "The outlook isn't that great," Kaspar Richter, a senior economist at the World Bank, told Bloomberg an interview in Warsaw. "The recovery will be very modest in 2010 and won't be that sizeable the year afterward. Investment has plummeted, so productive capacities have suffered, and credit growth is now negative across the region." Central Europe has been hurt by a sharp drop in exports, a mainstay of most of the region's economies, while fiscal austerity measures have crippled domestic demand, said the World Bank, which contributed USD 6.6 billion to bailout efforts in the region. The Baltic States have suffered the worst decline in the region after a credit shortage halted a period of prosperity that followed EU accession. The 10 eastern EU members will probably see their economies grow about 1 percent next year and 3.6 percent in 2011, after a contraction of 4.2 percent this year, the World Bank predicts.

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