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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.

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%).