UPDATE 1-Mexico's primary budget surplus for 2019 higher than envisioned

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MEXICO CITY, Jan 30 (Reuters) - Mexico’s finance ministry on Thursday reported a primary budget surplus of 1.1% for 2019, slightly more than the 1% set out in its budget, adding that at the end of the year its financial results were better than expected.

Earlier, it pledged strict management of public sector debt and said government financing needs would be lower this year than last, when credit ratings came under intense scrutiny.

“For the end of 2019, the financial results were better than expected, which validates our commitment for healthy public finances,” the ministry said in a statement, while conceding the economy had slowed.

Mexico’s economy contracted last year for the first time in a decade. (Reporting by Sharay Angulo; Writing by Stefanie Eschenbacher; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)