South Korea's Forecast: 5.0% Growth In 2006

South Korea's state think tank on Dec. 18 projected the country's economic growth at 5% next year as forecast by the central bank on the back of robust exports and a recovery in consumer spending. The Korea Development Institute said it expected the exports and private consumption to expand 12.5% and 4.2% next year respectively.

The research arm of the finance and economy ministry said the central bank should gradually raise interest rates to curb inflationary pressure. The Bank of Korea early this month expected the country's gross domestic product growth to reach 5.0% next year on a 10.8% growth in exports and 4.5% gain in consumer spending.

South Korea's economy grew 4.6% in 2004 with 3.9% growth expected this year, according to the bank.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2005

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