Armenia‘s Q3 GDP growth quickens to 3.5 pct yr/yr
YEREVAN, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Armenia‘s gross domestic product grew by 3.5 percent in the third quarter of this year, official data showed on Thursday, better than the same period in 2016 when it contracted by 2.6 percent.
The Caucasus nation‘s economic growth slowed to 0.2 percent last year, falling well short of the government‘s original target of 2.2 percent.
This year‘s figures are better so far. GDP growth hit 6.5 percent in the first quarter of 2017, outstripping a 4.4 percent rise in the same period a year earlier. The growth in the second quarter was 5.5 percent, up from 1.5 percent in the same period of 2016.
The country of 3.2 million depends heavily on aid and investment from former imperial master Russia, whose economic downturn has hit Armenian exports and remittances from Armenians working there.
The government expects the country‘s economy to grow by 3.2 percent this year, helped by lower borrowing costs and increased exports to Russia.
Armenian‘s Finance Minister Vardan Aramyan told Reuters in September the economy was set to grow by 4.3 percent this year.
The central bank said on Wednesday it had raised its forecast for GDP growth to 4.4-4.9 percent this year, up from an earlier estimate of 3.8-4.8 percent. (Reporting by Hasmik Mkrtchyan; Writing by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Alison Williams)