Russian Government Will Be Able to Reduce Inflation Rate to 10% in 2003, INF Says

In 2003 the Russian government will be able to bring the inflation rate down to 10 percent, says John Olding-Smee, director of the 2nd department of the International Monetary Fund's European board. And according to the Russian Cabinet's estimates, the inflation rate will stand at 12 percent at the year's end.

Speaking at an international conference on social aspects of the Russian economy's modernization, held in Moscow on Wednesday, the IMF official announced his fund's intention to revise its 2003 GDP growth forecast for Russia that had been made last September. The original forecast puts the inflation rate at 4.9 percent, while the actual figure will likely be higher owing to a recent slowdown in Russia's economic growth, he explained.

Olding-Smee called on the Russian government for further structural and institutional reform. He said that an effective macroeconomic policy was not enough for an economic boost. Structural and institutional reforms are also necessary, and such reforms should become a priority with the Russian government in the next few years, Olding-Smee emphasized.