September 12, 2017 / 10:20 AM / a year ago

Italy Treasury sees 2017 growth at 1.4-1.5 percent: chief economist

ROME (Reuters) - Italy’s economy will expand by up to 1.5 percent this year, the Treasury’s chief economist said on Tuesday, and growth will accelerate in the third quarter from the previous period.

Speaking at a conference in Rome, Riccardo Barbieri said the Treasury sees 1.4-1.5 percent growth this year, higher than the government’s official 1.1 percent forecast. Growth will also well exceed 1.2 percent next year, he said, versus the official 1.0 percent forecast.

He said third quarter growth would accelerate. In the second quarter, Italian gross domestic product expanded 0.4 percent from the previous quarter and 1.5 percent from a year earlier.

Sources told Reuters on Wednesday that the government would revise higher its growth forecast for this year to 1.4 or 1.5 percent, and that it would also revise up its 2018 growth forecast. The new official forecasts are due to be issued later this month.

Reporting by Antonella Cinelli, writing by Steve Scherer

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