KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- Economic experts have new projections for when Kansas City will recover from the impact of COVID-19. And while they believe the economic recovery will be quicker than the 2008 recession, they don't believe local employment numbers will return to normal for around three years.

The Mid-America Regional Council is hosting a webinar for elected officials and business leaders at 2 p.m. Wednesday to give their economic outlook for Kansas City and how they see the COVID recovery efforts coming along.

In that webinar, they will also touch on which industries are most likely to have the toughest time, including hospitality, food services and arts & entertainment. It's the same trend experts say they are seeing nationally.

Even so, the recovery should be sharper than the 2008 recession, from which it took businesses and employees around six years to recover.

Kansas City is in a relatively good position to bounce back because of the region's diverse industries, according to the Mid-America Regional Council. Specializing in things like transportation and logistics, construction and financial services can make the local economy more resilient.

Frank Lenk is the director of research services for MARC and one of the key people who put the webinar together.

"It does look like we are recovering faster than the overall U.S. average," he said. "We should return to that pre-COVID employment a few quarters earlier than the nation as a whole."

These experts said that takes into account the possibility of a resurgence of coronavirus cases. They said they always take into account seasonal changes like a slowdown in construction and an increase in retail over the winter months, but this year presents its own challenges because of the pandemic.

They said the area's initial response to the pandemic---providing aid and instituting partial shutdowns---was appropriate and lends itself to a quicker recovery.

"That has helped keep the job loss not from being as large as it was, but for the recovery to be much faster than it would have otherwise been," Lenk said.

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