BERLIN: Germany's economy, battered by the financial market chaos, will not recover to its pre-crisis levels for another four years, the head of the central bank in Europe's top economy said on Monday.

"The economic recovery will take a while. The German economy will not reach the level of prosperity it enjoyed in 2008 until, probably, 2013," Bundesbank president Axel Weber said in an interview with theFrankfurter Rundschau daily.

"And the road up will be bumpy," he said.

Nevertheless, he said the phase of "free fall" was behind Germany, which was hit especially hard by a slump in global demand as its economy is highly dependent on exports.

The country is slowly getting to its feet after suffering its deepest slump in sixty years.

This year, output is set to shrink by between five and six percent, Chancellor Angela Merkel, seeking re-election on Sunday, said recently.