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UPDATE 1-IMF forecasts Armenian GDP growth of 3 pct, inflation at 2 pct in 2017
April 12, 2017 / 3:21 PM / 4 months ago

UPDATE 1-IMF forecasts Armenian GDP growth of 3 pct, inflation at 2 pct in 2017

(Adds quotes, details, background)

YEREVAN, April 12 (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund expects Armenia's gross domestic product to grow by 3 percent and annual inflation to reach 2 percent in 2017, Hossein Samiei, the IMF mission chief, said on Wednesday.

The IMF mission completed its visit to Armenia this week.

Armenia, a country of 3.2 million people, depends heavily on aid and investment from Russia, whose economic downturn has hit Armenian exports and much-needed remittances from Armenians working there.

"Foreign capital expenditure could be higher than was expected in December," Samiei told a news conference.

In December, the IMF forecast 2017 economic growth of 2.7 percent. The economy grew 6 percent in the first quarter of 2017, IMF data show.

Remittances and copper prices have also picked up and growth in Russia should improve this year, Samiei said. He cautioned that the recovery in remittances and copper prices might not last and growth in key trading partners may be weaker than expected.

He said that the government promised to put effort into diversifying exports, tackling corruption and implementing structural reforms. (Reporting by Hasmik Mkrtchyan; writing by Margarita Antidze; editing by Larry King)

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