By Mirsaid Ibrahimzade
Growth forecasts for Azerbaijan’s economy which are reflected in reports prepared by leading analysts of WB, ADB, IMF stick to simultaneous indicators of national economy.
Recently, Zhannur Ashigali, associate director of the Sovereign Ratings and Forecasting Group at Russia’s Analytical Credit Rating Agency (ACRA) told Trend that economic growth in Azerbaijan is expected at 1.5-2 percent in 2019-2020.
"This is related to the revival of foreign trade (positive trade balance with an increase in commodity turnover), industrial production growth, which in itself is based on trends in Azerbaijan’s energy sector and a stable monetary policy of the monetary authorities," he noted.
The Azerbaijani government is taking measures and implementing large-scale programs for the development of the country’s economy. Thanks to all these measures, the position of Azerbaijan in the world rankings and the forecasts of international institutions and agencies on the growth of Azerbaijan’s economy have improved.
Thus, the World Bank (WB) expects that the economy of Azerbaijan will grow by 3.5 percent in 2020 and by 3.7 percent in 2021.
Compared to the previous report, the forecasts on the growth of the Azerbaijani economy increased by 0.2 and 1 percentage points, respectively.
Azerbaijan’s economy expanded at a moderate pace in 2018 aided by stable oil production and a modest pick-up in domestic demand, as higher oil earnings boosted fiscal spending and real wages rose, WB said. As a result, real GDP in 2018 increased by 1.4 percent.
While oil production plateaued, the hydrocarbons sector overall posted growth of 1.1 percent thanks to higher exports of natural gas. The non-energy economy expanded by 1.8 percent, reflecting greater dynamism in most economic sectors.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) expects that the economy of Azerbaijan will grow by 2.5 percent in 2019 and by 2.7 percent in 2020.
This information was provided Asian Development Bank in its April report entitled "Asian Development Outlook (ADO) 2019: Strengthening Disaster Resilience".
"GDP growth strengthened in 2018 as expansion in services and agriculture continued, and as industry contracted less. Exchange rate stability tamed inflation, and higher oil prices widened the current account surplus. Growth is forecast to inch higher in 2019 and 2020 on expanded public spending, gas production, and non-petroleum output, with inflation rebounding slightly in both years and higher gas exports further widening the current account surplus. Improving infrastructure is an important challenge," the report said.
Meanwhile, according to the forecasts of the Fitch agency, the economy of Azerbaijan will grow by 3.5 percent in 2019.
The international rating agency Standard & Poor's (S&P) expects the Azerbaijani economy to grow by 2.3 percent in 2019. The government of Azerbaijan forecasts GDP growth in 2019 at the level of 3.6 percent.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts that the growth rate of the Azerbaijani economy can accelerate to 3.4 percent in 2019.
Azerbaijan’s GDP will grow 3.1 percent in 2020, according to the report.
The growth of Azerbaijan’s economy exceeds the average indices for the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) (2.2 and 2.3 percent, respectively) and for the countries exporting energy to the CIS (2.1 and 2.2 percent, respectively).
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