(Adds that Spain may overshoot 2017 deficit target)
MADRID Oct 8 Spain's economy may grow by more
than 3.1 percent in 2016, up from the current official target of
2.9 percent, despite political deadlock, acting Economy Minister
Luis de Guindos told reporters in Washington on Saturday.
"My understanding is that we will beat this forecast, the
accurate (figure) will be better than the forecast from the
International Monetary Fund," De Guindos said on the sidelines
of an IMF and World Bank meeting in Washington.
The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday increased its
2016 growth forecast for Spain to 3.1 percent from 2.6 percent.
It also increased its 2017 forecast by 0.1 of a percentage
Spain is growing at one of the fastest paces in the euro
zone despite nine months without a government, after two
However, De Guindos recognized Spain would miss its public
deficit target of 3.1 percent of national output for 2017 as it
has been unable to draw up a new budget for next year due to the
This will force the caretaker conservative government to
roll over the one for 2016, which does not contain new measures
demanded by Brussels to trim the fiscal gap.
Spain overshot its target by a wide margin in 2015, and the
European Commission relaxed its deficit goals to give the
country until 2018 to get the budget gap down to below 3 percent
of output, instead of by this year.
(Reporting by Jesús Aguado; editing by Robert Hetz and Andrew