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EBRD Predicts Pick-Up In Region's Economic Growth

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is predicting that economic growth in the region it covers will pick up moderately in 2017-18, supported by stable commodity prices.

The EBRD, which operates in 36 countries from Eastern Europe to Morocco and Mongolia, said in its biannual economic report on May 10 that it forecast growth across the region to rise 2.4 percent in 2017 and 2.8 percent in 2018.

But the report said the acceleration, from an estimated 1.8 percent in 2016, falls short of the world average growth as projected by the International Monetary Fund, and warned that forecasts were subject to geopolitical tensions in a global environment “characterized by increased political uncertainty.”

For Russia, the bank confirmed its previous 2017 growth forecast of 1.2 percent and predicted 1.4 percent next year.

Growth is also projected to "pick up slightly" in Central Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Caucasus, reflecting a stabilization of oil prices at levels well above those recorded in the first half of 2016 and a resumption of growth in Russia following a two-year recession.

Based on reporting by Reuters