|10-08-2014, 01:59 PM||#1|
IMF cuts Arab growth forecast but sees economical expansion in GCC counties
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has lowered its economic growth forecasts for most Arab countries and especially the Middle East and North African (Mena) region excluding the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) oil-rich countries.
In its semi-annual World Economic Outlook published Tuesday, the IMF said the Middle East and North African (Mena) region would grow by 2.6 per cent this year, compared with 3.2 per cent forecast in April.
"With increased strife in some countries in the region, the projected pickup in growth in 2014... is now projected to be weaker relative" to the April forecast, the IMF said.
According to the IMF, it is expected that MENA growth will contract by 2.7 percent this year, from a prior predicted growth of 5.9 percent. However, the GCC counties growth is projected to stay strong with a growth pace around 4.5 percent this year and the next.
The IMF only cut its economic growth projections for Kuwait as its economy contracted by 0.4 last year but increased its growth forecasts for Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
As for Egypt and Tunisia; the major countries affected deeply by recent political turmoil and revolutions, the IMF said that they will actually continue to be negatively affected by instability.
Egypt’s economy is expected to expand by 2.2 percent in 2014, slightly lower from 2.3 percent expected in April, while Tunisia is expected to grow 2.8 percent in 2014 from 3.0 percent also predicted in April.
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