April 1, 2014 / 5:10 AM / in 4 years

UPDATE 1-Mexican growth seen accelerating in 2015 - Finance Ministry

MEXICO CITY, March 31 (Reuters) - Mexican economic growth should accelerate by 4.7 percent in 2015, up from an estimated 3.9 percent this year, the finance ministry said on Monday.

The economy grew just 1.1 percent last year, marking a four-year low due to a downturn in factory output and construction.

Growth in the first quarter of this year has also been hampered by slower growth in the United States and poor weather, Central Bank Governor Agustin Carstens said last Friday.

The new finance ministry predictions are part of its latest budget forecasts and include an expectation that oil production will rise to 2.62 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2015 from 2.52 million bpd this year.

Oil exports are expected to increase to 1.24 million bpd in 2015 from 1.17 mln bpd this year, according to the forecasts.

President Enrique Pena Nieto last year approved a string of reforms aimed at boosting the economy, including opening up Mexico’s oil industry and state oil company Pemex to foreign competition.

But after a rush of euphoria related to the reforms, growth is failing to live up to expectations and analysts have been scaling back their growth estimates.

Analysts currently expect economic growth in 2014 of 3.2 percent, a Mexican central bank survey showed this month. (Reporting by Luis Rojas and Elinor Comlay; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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