Russia GDP to drop by 6pc in 2020

MOSCOW (AFP) – Russia’s Central Bank yesterday said the economy would shrink by four to six per cent this year, as hopes of a revival were dashed by the coronavirus and falling oil prices.

“The Bank of Russia has sub-stantially reviewed its baseline scenario parameters. GDP is forecast to decrease by four to six per cent in 2020,” it said in a statement.

Measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and the decline in oil prices have had “a substantial negative impact on economic activity”, it said.

Growth will start to recover at 2.8 to 4.8 per cent next year and go on to grow by 1.5 to 3.5 per cent in 2022, it said, while predicting the price of oil to rise from USD27 per barrel to USD35 in 2021 and USD45 in 2022.

The board of directors also cut the bank’s key interest rate by 0.5 percentage points to 5.5 per cent.