(Updates with comment from IMF official in fourth paragraph)
By Stelios Orphanides
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Tuesday it expects the Cypriot economy’s growth to slow down to 2.6 per cent next year from 3.4 per cent in 2017.
Consumer prices are expected to increase 0.8 per cent this year and 0.7 per cent in 2018, the IMF said in its World Economic Outlook. The unemployment rate is expected to drop next year to 10.7 per cent from 11.8 per cent this year and 13 per cent last year.
The current account deficit is expected to narrow to 3.8 per cent of economic output in 2017 and to 2.7 per cent next year from 5.3 per cent last year, the IMF said.
While the new forecast appears to revise downwards the forecast published in the concluding statement prepared by the IMF staff on Friday, a week after the latest post-programme surveillance mission, it actually preceded it as it was prepared in September, an IMF official said in a telephone interview on Wednesday.
The finance ministry said on September 13, that it expects the economy to expand 3.6 per cent this year and 3 per cent in 2018, after growing 3 per cent last year.