Azerbaijan can accelerate growth in private sector lending

Photo: Azerbaijan can accelerate growth in private sector lending / Economy news

Baku, Azerbaijan, April 2

By Abbas Akhundov - Trend:

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) expects growth in the industrial production of Azerbaijan's economy by 0.9 percent in 2014, followed by a slowdown up to 0.5 percent in 2015, according to Asian Development Outlook- 2014.

"The oil and gas sector will contribute to this growth," according to the report. "The construction will remain an important driving force of the economy through the state investments. The government will continue supporting agriculture through subsidies and concessional loans for farmers. Agriculture is expected to increase by 5.5 percent in 2014 and 5.7 percent in 2015. The grain production growth will affect these rates. The service sector will grow by eight percent in 2014 and 8.5 percent in 2015 due to tourism and trade."

The recently adopted state programs for development of Baku and regions of the country will define new opportunities for state investments to diversify the economy. However, the attempts of making the state budget less dependent on oil revenues may reduce the state investments in the future, perhaps, by slowing the growth of the economy, which is forecast today, according to the report.

"The banks are expected to intensify the issuance of micro, small and medium-sized loans after the control over consumer loans is strengthened," according to the report. "In early 2014, the Central Bank of Azerbaijan announced significant simplification of reserve requirements. Both changes may accelerate the growth of the private sector lending."

The current account surplus is projected at 16 percent of GDP in 2014 and 15 percent of GDP in 2015, by showing great oil and gas export, according to the bank. The import is expected to increase by 3.4 percent in 2014 and 4 percent in 2015.

"The new consumer credit rules will reduce imports of electrical equipment and other household goods, while import growth will be ensured through the import of equipment to implement the Shah Deniz gas condensate field project," according to the statement.

translated by NH

Edited by CN

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