November 30, 2016 / 8:35 AM / a year ago

Georgia's economic growth slows to 1.3 pct year-on-year in October

TBILISI, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Georgia’s economic growth slowed to 1.3 percent year-on-year in October from 3 percent in the same month a year ago, the National Statistics Service said on Wednesday, highlighting the impact of falling exports and a rising current account deficit.

The former Soviet republic, where economic growth was 1.5 percent in September, has also been hit by a plunge in the Russian rouble.

Although the situation has improved since April, with the lari stabilising and remittances rising, Georgia’s currency began to depreciate again in September and hit an all-time low of 2.5311 to the dollar on Tuesday, down from 2.5026 on Monday.

Georgia, which is criss-crossed by pipelines taking Caspian oil and gas from Azerbaijan to Europe, saw its economy grow 2.5 percent in the first ten months of 2016, compared with the same period a year before, when growth was running at 2.8 percent.

The government has said it expects 3-percent growth in 2016, compared with 2.8 percent in 2015 and 4.6 percent in 2014.

The International Monetary Fund forecasts Georgia’s economy to grow by 2.7 percent this year. (Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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