ADB retains its economic growth forecast in Azerbaijan
Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 22
By Azad Hasanli - Trend:
The Asian Development Bank has kept its forecast for economic growth in Azerbaijan in 2015 at a level of 3 percent, said the updated Asian Development Outlook report of the ADB.
The previous report was published in March 2015.
The bank has kept the forecasts on other economic parameters at the same level. So, in 2015 GDP, as it was expected, will grow by 3 percent and in 2016 by 2.8 percent.
The ADB emphasized that the economy rebounded with robust growth of 5.7 percent in the first half of 2015, up from 2.1 percent in the same period in 2014.
"The public investment program remains a key source of economic expansion and employment, but budget revenues are under pressure from lower oil prices," said the analysts of the ADB. "Despite low prices, oil production in the first half of the year rose by 1.3 percent, reversing a 3.9 percent contraction in January-June 2014, but is expected to level off for the rest of the year to allow annual maintenance."
"Despite a reduction in spending from the budget plan, fiscal policy is expected to remain somewhat expansionary in 2015 to support the economy," the ADB said.
The 2016 budget is being tightened, as low petroleum prices have led to the postponement of some investment projects, according to ADB estimate.
The bank expects an average 3.3 percent economic growth in 2015 in Central Asia, where the ADB traditionally includes Azerbaijan as well, and a 4.2 percent growth in 2016. Azerbaijan is one of the four Central Asian countries (including Georgia, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan), whose forecast for GDP growth remained unchanged compared with the previous forecast, according to the ADB.
The bank expects economic slowdown in the rest of the countries. For example, GDP growth in Armenia in 2015 and 2016 is projected at 1.2 percent and 2 percent, respectively, whereas in the previous forecast, the figures were 1.6 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively.
In other countries, the region's economic growth forecast for 2015 and 2016 is as follows: Tajikistan - 3.5 percent (4 percent in the previous forecast) and 4.2 percent (4.8 percent), Kazakhstan - 1.5 percent (1, 9 percent) and 3.3 percent (3.8 percent), Georgia - 2 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively, Kyrgyzstan - 1.7 percent and 2 percent, respectively, Turkmenistan - 9.5 percent (9.7 percent) and 9.2 percent, respectively, Uzbekistan - 7 percent and 7.2 percent, respectively.
ADB was founded in 1966 and has 67 members. The bank's headquarters is located in Manila, the capital of the Philippines. Azerbaijan became ADB member on December 22, 1999. The country's share in the bank's capital is 0.5 percent.
ADB's leading shareholders are Japan and the United States (31.2 percent of the total share capital), India and China (12.8 percent), Australia, South Korea and Canada (16 percent) and so on.
Edited by CN