World bank gloom on Russian economy as OECD looks for sharp rebound

The economic crisis is changing the structure of Russia's population, boosting the number of poor and cutting the middle class. It's part of the World Bank’s forecast for this year - and it just got more gloomy.

One fifth of the population is poor, Unemployment hitting 13%.

The World Bank has lowered its outlook for Russia, saying the economy will contract 7.9 % and the recovery may take three years.

Or even longer, according to Zhelko Bogetich, The World Bank’s Chief economist for Russia.

“The challenge is for all countries to resist the temptation towards the quick fixes of raising tariffs, to put trade barriers towards – that would result in retaliation and decline in trade flows and that alone will affect economic recovery that is already fairly weak.”

But there was a ray of hope from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. It says – the recovery will be sharp.

The group of the world's rich economies, said on Wednesday the deepest global recession in 60 years is nearing its bottom, but the recovery is likely to be "weak and fragile," with its member- economies expected to grow by less than 1% in 2010.

But its Russian outlook is more optimistic – 3.7% growth next year, a sharp decline followed by a sharp recovery.