Economy Minister forecasts 6% economic growth in Q2, 2003

Russian economic growth may amount to 6 percent by the end of the second quarter of 2003, Russian Economy Minister German Gref told reporters in St. Petersburg today. According to him, the Economy Ministry does not intend to change its forecast for economic growth of 2003 which is between 4.5 and 5 percent. In 2003, the maximum growth may come to 5.5 percent, Gref claimed.

Meanwhile, over the first five months of 2003, economic growth totaled 7.1 percent. This relatively high rate was largely due to a sag in the Russian economy in late 2002, the minister said. He also stressed that the resignation of the government that a number of Duma deputies were striving for "was unintelligible" under the circumstances.

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