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McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski said he expects dining inside the fast-food giant's restaurants to bounce back.

"I think dine-in is always going to be here," he said in a CNBC Evolve Conference panel that aired Wednesday. "Eating is such a social experience, and dine-in is a part of that social experience." 

Over the last year, digital ordering and drive-thru sales have surged across the fast-food sectors, helping McDonald's and its rivals recover from the crisis faster than the broader restaurant industry. McDonald's, for example, saw its U.S. same-store sales turn positive by the third quarter of 2020. In its latest quarter, the company reported U.S. same-store sales growth of 13.6%.

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