OP financial group upgrades Finland's economic forecasts

GMT 23:49 2016 Tuesday ,17 May

Arab Today, arab today OP financial group upgrades Finland's economic forecasts

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Helsinki - XINHUA

OP Financial Group, the largest financial service group in Finland, raised its forecast for the country's economic growth in 2016, reported Finnish online business daily Talousanomat on Tuesday.

In its latest forecast, OP Group upgraded Finland's economic forecast for 2016 to grow by 1.1 percent from 0.8 percent in the previous prediction made in January, said Talousanomat.

The growth would be based mainly on the recovery of investment, particularly, a strong pick-up in construction investment, said the financial group.

Meanwhile, the projection for 2017 was lowered to 1.4 percent from 1.6 percent.

Reijo Heiskanen, chief economist of OP Group, explained that the outlook was clouded by the slow growth in exports, as well as a number of risks such as the weak compact of competitiveness agreement on the economy, the global economic slowdown and uncertainty over Britain's membership of the European Union.

The financial group expected the country's exports to grow 0.3 percent this year and 3.1 percent in 2017.

The Finnish economy has been mired in a prolonged recession since the global financial crisis in 2008. After three consecutive years of negative growth, the Finnish economy has finally started to show some signs of recovery.

In February, the European Commission forecasted that the Finnish economy will grow just by 0.5 percent in 2016. It said that Finland was the only EU country whose growth would remain below 1.0 percent except Greece. The average growth rate in the EU could be 1.7 percent this year.

The Finnish Ministry of Finance admitted that Finland had not been properly kept the pace with the growth in the rest of the euro zone.

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