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No one disputes the fact that economic growth is continuing in Russia. In the photo: "Guarantee GDP growth?"
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Apr. 15, 2008
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Rosstat Confirms Record GDP Growth
According to the data of Rosstat, the state statistic service, the Russian GDP grew by 9.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2007 and by 8.1 percent (in real terms, 22.7 percent nominally) in the year as a whole, to 32.987 trillion rubles. Analysts doubt that the agency did its math right, but do not doubt that the growth will continue. Gross added value grew fastest in construction (16.4%) and retail (12.9%) and slowest in the mining industry (0.3%). Production and distribution of electricity, gas and water shrank by 1.9 percent.
Economists contacted by Kommersant object that those high indicators were made possible by the use of a relatively low GDP deflator index (used to establish the difference between the real and nominal GDP) of 113.5 percent for 2007. That is not much, considering that consumer prices rose 11.9 percent in the course of the year, and producers' prices rose 25.1 percent.

No one disputes the fact that economic growth is continuing in Russia, however. The only thing that is changing is its model. The most notable change is in exports. In 2000, export accounted for 20 percent of the GDP; in 2007, it accounted for 8.7 percent of the GDP. Meanwhile, consumptive use (exclusively in the state sector in 2007) and gross savings have increased. Investment in fixed assets and material reserves has also had an impact. Dependence on raw materials is decreasing.

Economists say that the service sector can be expected to shrink due to the world financial crisis, which will eventually impact Russian banks, leading to reduced consumer crediting and trade. Agriculture may begin to play a larger role in economic growth, however. Its gross added value has rarely exceeded 3 percent in recent years, and its contribution to the GDP has been only around 4 percent, while investment in it grew by 42.5 percent in 2006 and 26 percent in 2007. Rising food prices and growing investment in agriculture will stimulate heavy industry. The agricultural sector will, nonetheless, remain full of risks and uncertainty.
www.kommersant.com

All the Article in Russian as of Apr. 15, 2008

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