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Central Bank More Pessimistic on Growth Than Government

Central Bank economic growth expectations for the next three years are lower than the government's forecasts, according to a document produced by the financial regulator.

Gross domestic product growth will be 2 percent next year, 2.5 percent in 2015 and 3 percent in 2016 in the bank's base scenario, used to set monetary policy for the oil-driven economy.

The government's forecasts, issued in September, are for growth of 3.0 percent next year, 3.1 percent in 2015 and 3.3 percent in 2016. On Thursday, the Economic Development Ministry said Russian GDP will lag global growth for the next two decades.

"The effectiveness of private and public investment is expected to remain low," the Central Bank document, issued Saturday, said.

Net exports will remain weak and demand for imported goods will stay strong, it said.

Domestic demand, which the World Bank estimates contributes 48 percent of Russia's GDP output, will continue to be the main driver of growth, the bank said.

It estimates that consumer spending will increase by 4 percent this year and 4.4 percent annually from 2014 to 2016.

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