Economy, News

Georgian government contests negative growth figures

by | Aug 4, 2013

TBILISI, DFWatch–Georgia’s economy and finance ministries claim that data recently published by the National Statistics Department, GeoStat, showing negative economic growth is not final and will be adjusted twice.

On Wednesday, GeoStat published a report about economic growth which showed that GDP growth in June was negative -0.8 percent compared to the same period in 2012.

GDP growth was 1.3 percent in the second quarter of 2013 and 1.8 percent in the first six months of 2013.

The National Movement party claimed that the downturn is a result of the government’s failed policy and they think the situation will get even worse.

The government, however, doesn’t share the UNM’s concern. The two ministries claim that the data at the root of the dispute is only preliminary and does not include for example data about agriculture.

The government thinks agriculture figures for June must cause about 1 to 1.5 percent GDP growth and that this is confirmed by the Statistics Department, which means that there will be positive growth, not negative.

“In the first six months of 2013, the Georgian economy grew by 1.8 percent and it hasn’t reduced,” the statement of the economy and finance ministries reads.

As further backing for this expectation, the ministries write that the amount of fees in the first three months of 2013 is USD 2 300 million, more than the amount in the same period in 2012, and about USD 20 million more than last year. Tax income was USD 2 156 million, which is USD 28 million more than same period in 2102.

“We want to declare that the government will fulfill all of its commitments towards citizens, including financing of social and other important infrastructure project,” the statement says.

The ministries claim that the economy of Georgia is in the process of ‘structural

improvement.’

“By now, the trade balance has already improved due to increased export and reduced import,” the ministries point out.



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