Sunday, 22 October, 2017

International Monetary Fund projects global economy to grow at 3.6% this year

Maurice Obstfeld chief economist at IMF SHARE Share on Facebook SHARE Share on Twitter TWEET Link
Saul Franklin | 11 October, 2017, 00:28

Growth forecasts for the Philippines have been revised anew, with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) trimming its 2018 forecast and an Asean+3 think tank doing the same for its 2017 projection.

In its twice yearly benchmark World Economic Outlook, the Washington-based organisation raised growth forecasts for all advanced economies aside from the UK. Growth is forecast to be 1.7 per cent this year and 1.5 per cent next.

The IMF upgraded its global economic growth forecast for 2017 by 0.1 percentage point to 3.6% and to 3.7% for 2018, driven by a pickup in trade, investment and consumer confidence. With growth outcomes in the first half of 2017 generally stronger than expected, upward revisions to growth are broad based, including for the eurozone, Japan, China, emerging Europe, and Russian Federation.

Russian economy contracted by 2.8 percent in 2015 and 0.2 percent in 2016 as a result of sagging oil prices and economic sanctions imposed by western countries over Moscow's annexation of Crimea and meddling in Ukraine.

That said, India's economy is still expected to see robust growth - not far below 7% this year and above that level in 2018.

The Fund upgraded its growth rates for China all the way through 2022, on the assumption that authorities in Beijing will maintain expansionary policies.

The World Bank's growth projection made in June was 7.2 percent for this year and 7.5 percent next year.

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Although the United Kingdom is an exception to the pattern of strengthening growth in the IMF's assessment, for this year and next the growth projections are stronger than two other G7 economies, Japan and Italy.

"In India, growth momentum slowed, reflecting the lingering impact of the authorities' currency exchange initiative as well as uncertainty related to the midyear introduction of the country-wide Goods and Services Tax", the International Monetary Fund said in its latest World Economic Outlook report.

The Washington-based institution upgraded every advanced nation except the United Kingdom in its latest set of forecasts and claimed that there was "good cause for greater confidence" in the world economy.

GDP in the west African powerhouse Nigeria contracted by 1.6 percent in 2016, but is predicted to grow by 0.8 percent this year and 1.9 percent next year.

Explaining the cut, the report said that India's growth momentum slowed because of "the lingering impact" of last year's demonetisation "as well as uncertainty related to the midyear introduction of the country-wide Goods and Services Tax". Beyond next year, it said that it expects global growth to increase marginally, reaching 3.8 per cent by 2021.

The IMF report has also downgraded South Africa.

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