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Honduras central bank says economy could grow 5.2% in 2021 after pandemic, hurricanes

TEGUCIGALPA, March 26 (Reuters) - Honduras’ economy is expected to grow up to 5.2% in 2021, the central bank president said on Friday, a major rebound from a contraction in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and two devastating hurricanes.

The Central American country’s economy shrank a historic 9% in 2020 after a major drop in activity due to coronavirus restrictions. Hurricanes Eta and Iota also caused billions in damages, wiping out homes, infrastructure and crops, the government has said.

“In the period of 2021/2022, we expect a Gross Domestic Product between 3.2% and 5.2%,” said central bank president Wilfredo Cerrato at a press conference, adding that export manufacturing and construction had shown encouraging signs.

Honduras has 185,484 coronavirus infections and 4,527 related deaths, according to government data. (Reporting by Gustavo Palencia; writing by Cassandra Garrison; Editing by David Gregorio)