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EBRD sees moderate pick-up in region's growth, cautious on global backdrop
2017年5月10日 / 早上8点00分 / 6 个月前

EBRD sees moderate pick-up in region's growth, cautious on global backdrop

    By Karin Strohecker
    LONDON, May 10 (Reuters) - The European Bank for
Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) predicted on Wednesday
that its region's growth would pick up moderately as stable
commodity prices supporting Russia and surrounding countries
offset headwinds in Turkey.
    The EBRD - which operates in 36 countries from eastern
Europe to Morocco and Mongolia - trimmed the projections from
its last round of forecasts in November, striking a cautiously
positive tone though warning of increasing economic and
political uncertainties ahead.
    "As oil prices have stabilized at levels well above those
seen in the first half of 2016 and the Russian economy has
emerged from a two-year recession, growth in the east of the
region is projected to pick up gradually," the EBRD said in its
biannual economic report. 
    "The outlook for Turkey and Southern and Eastern
Mediterranean has weakened somewhat reflecting, in part,
security and geopolitical risks and a resulting drop in tourism
receipts and investment."
    The EBRD predicted growth across its region would rise from
1.8 percent in 2016 to average 2.4 percent in 2017 and 2.8
percent next year. In November, the bank had forecast 2017
growth at 2.5 percent.
    While the acceleration was broad based, it fell short of
both the world average growth as projected by the International
Monetary Fund and the EBRD's own region long-term average
growth, it added.
    
    DOWNGRADE
    The EBRD slashed Turkey's growth outlook by 0.4 percentage
points to 2.6 percent this year after slow growth in 2016 due to
factors including a credit rating downgrade to 'junk', the state
of emergency since the failed coup and the lira weakening
by 17 percent against the dollar in 2016 which pushed inflation
to double digits for the first time in five years in February.
    "Turkey's external situation remains a challenge," it said.
"Gross external financing needs are almost 25 percent of GDP,
leaving the country exposed to global liquidity conditions."
    For Russia, the EBRD confirmed its previous 2017 growth
forecast of 1.2 percent and predicted 1.4 percent in 2018. 
    "Growth is also expected to pick up slightly in Central Asia
and Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, reflecting a stabilisation
of commodity prices and resumed growth in Russia," it said.
    Central Asia and the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean
retained their places as the bank's two fastest growing regions,
but both saw their forecasts trimmed back from November. 
    Central Asia was expected to grow 3.8 percent this year with
foreign direct investment from China as part of its One Belt One
Road initiative lifting most of the region's economies.  
    Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries followed on the
heels at 3.7 percent. However, all countries in this category -
Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia - saw growth forecasts
trimmed due to factors such as rising inflation hampering
consumption and regional turmoil weighing on tourism. 
    Overall, the report pointed out that forecasts were subject
to major geopolitical tensions in and around its region as well
as economic policy uncertainty in major developed economies
following Donald Trump's election as president of the United
States and Britain's vote to leave the European Union. 
    "In addition, the global environment is characterized by
increased political uncertainty and a number of conundrums,
notably the substantial improvement in economic confidence
indicators that have not been reflected in hard economic data."
    Capital flows to emerging markets and also the EBRD region,
including bond and equity flows, strengthened in the first
months of 2017, the bank noted. Russia had been one of the main
beneficiaries of that trend, the EBRD added. 
    
                 Actual  Estimate   Current    Forecast  
                                   Forecasts     Nov     
                   2015      2016  2017  2018      2017  change
                                                         Nov-May
 EBRD Region 1      1.3       1.8   2.4   2.8       2.5     -0.1
 Central Europe     3.4       2.6   3.1   3.1         3      0.1
 and the Baltic                                          
 states                                                  
 Croatia            1.6       2.9   2.9   2.6         2      0.9
 Estonia            1.4       1.6   2.4   2.7       2.4        0
 Hungary            3.1         2     3     3       2.4      0.6
 Latvia             2.7         2   3.1   3.2       3.1        0
 Lithuania          1.8       2.3   2.9     3       2.9        0
 Poland             3.8       2.7   3.2   3.2       3.2        0
 SlovakRepublic     3.8       3.3   3.2   3.5       3.2        0
 Slovenia           2.3       2.5   2.5   2.2       2.3      0.2
 South-eastern      2.4       2.9   3.1     3         3      0.1
 Europe                                                  
 Albania            2.6       3.5   3.5   3.7       3.5        0
 Bosnia and           3         2   2.5     3         3     -0.5
 Herzegovina                                             
 Bulgaria           3.6       3.4   3.2     3       2.8      0.4
 Cyprus             1.7       2.8   2.5   2.2       2.2      0.3
 FYR Macedonia      3.8       2.4   2.4     3         3     -0.6
 Greece            -0.2         0     2   2.2         2        0
 Kosovo               4       3.4   3.5   3.5       3.5        0
 Montenegro         3.4       2.5     3   3.3       3.5     -0.5
 Romania            3.9       4.8     4   3.5       3.7      0.3
 Serbia             0.8       2.8   2.9     3       2.7      0.2
 Eastern Europe    -4.8         0   1.1   2.4       1.7     -0.6
 and the                                                 
 Caucasus                                                
 Armenia              3       0.2   2.5     3         2      0.5
 Azerbaijan         1.1      -3.1  -0.5     2         1     -1.5
 Belarus           -3.8      -2.6  -0.5     1         1     -1.5
 Georgia            2.9       2.7   3.9   4.2       3.9        0
 Moldova           -0.5       4.1     3   3.5       2.5      0.5
 Ukraine           -9.8       2.3     2     3         2        0
 Turkey             6.1       2.9   2.6     3         3     -0.4
 Russia            -2.8      -0.2   1.2   1.4       1.2        0
 Central Asia       3.7       3.5   3.8   4.6       3.9     -0.1
 Kazakhstan         1.2         1   2.4   3.5       2.4        0
 KyrgyzRepublic     3.9       3.8   3.9   4.1       2.6      1.3
 Mongolia           2.4         1   1.4   2.8       3.2     -1.8
 Tajikistan           6       6.9   3.8     4       4.1     -0.3
 Turkmenistan       6.5       6.2   5.7     6       7.1     -1.4
 Uzbekistan           8       7.8   6.2   6.5       6.2        0
 Southern and         4       3.4   3.7   4.1         4     -0.3
 Eastern                                                 
 Mediterranean                                           
 Egypt              4.4       4.3   3.8   4.5         4     -0.2
 Jordan             2.4         2   2.3   2.5       2.8     -0.5
 Morocco            4.5       1.5   4.2   3.8       4.8     -0.6
 Tunisia            1.1         1   2.2   2.7       2.5     -0.3
 Average           -2.1       0.4   1.6   2.1       1.7     -0.1
 "East":EEC,CA,                                          
 Russia                                                  
 Average            4.2       2.9   3.1   3.3       3.2     -0.1
 "West":CEB,SEE                                          
 ,SEMED,Turkey                                           
   

 (Reporting by Karin Strohecker; Editing by Janet Lawrence)
  

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