IMF raises Russian GDP growth forecast by almost 50%
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has again raised its growth forecast for the Russian economy in 2023, issuing revised figures in its World Economic Outlook report released on Tuesday.
The IMF now expects Russia’s GDP to grow 2.2% this year, a sharp increase from its April prediction of 0.7% and July projection of 1.5%.
“The rise in growth reflects a substantial fiscal stimulus, strong investment, and resilient consumption in the context of a tight labor market,” the IMF said.
The Russian Economy Ministry expects GDP to expand 2.8% this year. That follows a 2.1% contraction in 2022, when sweeping international sanctions largely shut out Moscow from Western markets and cut off its energy exports.
The IMF’s projection for this year is close to the upper figure set by Russia’s central bank, which expects the economy to grow 1.5-2.5% this year.
Despite the upward revision for the current year, the IMF reduced its forecast for 2024 from 1.3% to 1.1%. The Washington-based institution underscored the “mixed effects” of Western sanctions on Russian oil supplies, with consistent export flows and a shrinking discount on Russian crude to the Brent benchmark. Russia’s Urals blend is currently trading above the EU and G7’s $60 per barrel price cap.
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