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Swiss minister: economic situation means difficult years ahead

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Bern

ZURICH (Reuters) - The threat of recession in the euro zone and beyond, an energy supply squeeze and the eroding effect of inflation on purchasing power mean Switzerland faces difficult years ahead, Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter told the Neue Zuercher Zeitung.

"I consider this mixed situation to be very difficult," she said in comments published on Saturday. "We will feel this in Switzerland too. Economically difficult years await us."

Keller-Sutter sits on the seven-member executive Federal Council.

In September, the Swiss government significantly cut its economic growth forecasts, citing growing risks from a "tense energy situation and sharp price increases".

It now expects the country's economy to expand 2.0% this year, down from its June forecast for 2.6% growth. In 2023, the economy is expected to expand by 1.1%.

(Writing by Paul Carrel; Editing by Christina Fincher)