Economic recovery not around corner, expert says

The Sept. 11 hijacking attacks on the East Coast will cost Washington state thousands of jobs over the next two years, adding to the burdens of an economy already struggling with the high-tech downturn, the director of the state’s economic forecast council said.

“The recession in Washington will last longer than the U.S. recession and be deeper than the U.S. recession,” Chang Mook Sohn, the state’s lead economist, said recently.

He added that after Sept. 11, many economists gave up hope that Washington would rebound soon from the effects of the technology slump.

And with the state economy already on the brink, Boeing’s plan to slash 30,000 jobs as a result of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks is sending it over the edge.

An estimated 20,000 of those jobs will be lost in the Puget Sound region.

Unlike previous Boeing layoffs, this time other industries won’t be around to pick up the slack.

The state unemployment rate in November 2001 had already reached 6.8 percent – nearly the highest in the nation – before the first round of Boeing layoffs took effect.