Bulgaria's economic growth to be below 2% in 2011 - think-tank

Bulgaria's economic growth to be below 2% in 2011 - think-tank

Bulgaria's economic recovery is expected to stage a notable slowdown, with gross domestic product (GDP) growth to be below two per cent in 2011, local think-tank Centre for Economic Development (CED) said.A month ago, the Cabinet confirmed its forecast that the country's economy will stall its growth, revising down its guidance to 2.8 per cent from 3.6 per cent expected earlier.In mid-October, Tsvetoslav Tsachev, head of research at Elana Trading, announced projections for economic improvement of up to one per cent in the second half of 2011, pegging the rate for the entire year at a maximum two per cent.The slower recovery means that exports will not expand at the significant pace seen in the first half of the year, thus earnings of businesses in the manufacturing sector will grow slower than expected. As to the domestic market, unemployment will remain high and consumption will continue to be subdued.In the third quarter, GDP is seen to have increased by between one per cent and 1.5 per cent, down from 2.2 per cent in the second quarter, according to CED. The analysts consider that the slowdown in industry will be illustrated in the macroeconomic data for the third quarter, with the trend seen to persist towards the end of the year."The ongoing decline in sales in western Europe, however, will undoubtedly adversely affect Bulgarian exports - demand on this major export market for Bulgaria is likely to remain weak not only the end of this year, but also in early 2012," CED said.As a result, exports will continue to grow, but at lower rates, according to the analysts. (Source: The Sofia Echo)

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