Saudi Finance Minister says 2013 growth will top 4.4 percent -media

RIYADH Wed May 29, 2013 2:49am EDT

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RIYADH May 29 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's economy should grow this year by more than the 4.4 percent anticipated by the International Monetary Fund, its finance minister said in comments reported by the official Saudi Press Agency late on Tuesday.

"The IMF report this year on the Saudi economic growth forecast 4.4 percent. We do not agree with them and our opinion is that the kingdom's economic growth will be higher," SPA reported Ibrahim Alassaf as saying.

Saudi Arabia's gross domestic product rose 6.8 percent last year after growing 8.5 percent in 2011.

Growth in the world's top oil exporter is typically connected to energy prices and government spending, which have this year remained strong.

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