World economy to shrink 1-2 pct this year-Zoellick

LONDON, March 12 Wed Mar 11, 2009 8:31pm EDT

LONDON, March 12 (Reuters) - The global economy could contract by 1-2 percent this year in the toughest environment since the 1930s, World Bank President Robert Zoellick told the Daily Mail newspaper.

"My guess is that growth will probably fall about 1 to 2 percent," he told the paper in its Thursday edition.

"We haven't seen numbers like that since World War Two, which really means the Thirties. So these are serious and dangerous times."

"Trade will probably fall by the greatest amount in 80 years," Zoellick was quoted as saying.

The head of the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday the global economy would be gripped by a "Great Recession" in 2009, and contract.

(Reporting by Christina Fincher, Editing by Liz Piper)

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