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News // Russia

Oil-rich Russia sees economic growth ahead

01 December 2016 , 18:09Daniel J. GraeberNeftegaz.RU786

The economy of oil-rich Russia could catch up with the rest of the world in about 10 years if the conditions are right, the country's finance minister said.

 

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said the economy could grow at around 3 % by 2025 provided policies are in place to support lower inflation, lower interest rates and a stable tax regime.

«This is a very ambitious task, since we planned the growth from 0 to 1.5% for three years ahead,» he was quoted by Russian news agency Tass as saying. «This is a new target, a new task.»

 

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis finds gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 3.2% in the third quarter, compared with a 1.4% increase in the 2nd quarter.

Central Bank Gov. Elvira Nabiullina said the rate of inflation is expected to be close to its low-end outlook of around 5.5% this year and the International Monetary Fund said there are prospects for «modest» recovery starting in 2017. Inflation, however, was running below the target rate, according to the Russian Ministry of Economic Development. GDP, however, contracted 0.7%  on annual terms, but down 0.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis for September.

 

Sanctions and lower crude oil prices put pressure on the Russian economy, though the government expects investments in the oil sector to expand.

Nabiullina said she expected the price for Brent crude oil to hold around $40 per barrel, about $10 per barrel less than the current level, which is in line with budgetary expectations from the Kremlin.

 

Russia derives a sizeable portion of its revenue from oil and natural gas and is a main energy supplier to European and Asian economies.

The Russian government said it expects GDP to grow by 0.2% next year and 0.9% in 2018.

The forecast comes one day after members of OPEC agreed to cut production for the first time in nearly a decade.

OPEC and non-member states like Russia are producing oil at historically high levels and the proposal would require strict coordination to work effectively.

 

Russian oil company Lukoil said it would support the OPEC agreement if directed to comply.

The company's board of directors met in Moscow last week to review trends in the global energy industry over the coming years.

Its budget over the next 2 years is based on oil priced at $40 per barrel.

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