Russian economy shrank by 1.2% in 2022, less than previously thought

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A vendor gives candies to customers at a food market in Saint Petersburg, Russia, November 10, 2023. REUTERS/Anton Vaganov/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s economy contracted by 1.2% last year, less than the 2.1% decline previously estimated, the state statistics service Rosstat said on Friday.

Western countries imposed sweeping economic sanctions on Russia following President Vladimir Putin’s decision to send tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022.

“The changes in the GDP (gross domestic product) estimate for 2022 are due to the receipt of annual results of federal statistical observations and annual budget (accounting) reports of the Federal Treasury,” Rosstat said.

Rosstat said it had also revised the figure for 2021 GDP growth to 5.9%, up from the previous estimate of 5.6%.

Russia’s economy has rebounded strongly this year, helped by soaring government spending, particularly on military production.

A Reuters poll of analysts showed GDP rising by 3.1% in 2023, though Putin said on Dec. 14 that growth this year would reach 3.5%. The analysts polled by Reuters see growth slowing to 1.1% next year as high interest rates weigh on the economy.

Russian GDP growth for the third quarter of this year was confirmed earlier this month at 5.5% compared with the same period last year, when it shrank 3.5%.

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