May 23, 2018 / 2:25 PM / a year ago

IMF keeps Russia's 2018 economic growth forecast unchanged at 1.7 percent

FILE PHOTO: International Monetary Fund (IMF) logo is seen at the IMF headquarters building during the IMF/World Bank annual meetings in Washington, U.S., October 14, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund kept its forecast for Russian economic growth this year steady at 1.7 percent despite Western sanctions against Russia, the IMF said on Wednesday.

The IMF’s mission chief to Russia, Ernesto Ramirez Rigo, said the sanctions imposed on Russia were not the only factor in the IMF’s calculation and that it also took into account oil prices that were currently higher than the fund expected.

The IMF said it expected economic growth in 2019 to stand at 1.5 percent, also unchanged from the previous projections.

Reporting by Zlata Garasyuta; Writing by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Catherine Evans

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