Lithuanian Central Bank Raises 2011 GDP Forecast to 6.2%

Aug. 11 (Bloomberg) -- Lithuanian economic growth may accelerate this year at a faster pace than previously estimated on rebounding domestic demand and investments, the central bank said.

Gross domestic product will probably expand 6.2 percent this year, compared with a May estimate of 5.6 percent, the Vilnius-based Lietuvos Bankas said today in an e-mailed statement in its third increase in the outlook this year. It kept its 2012 growth forecast unchanged at 4.8 percent.

Lithuanian economy, part of the Baltic region along with Estonia and Latvia that suffered the world’s deepest recession in 2009, is growing at the second-fastest rate in the European Union after Estonia. Output grew a preliminary 6.1 percent in the second quarter on year, driven by foreign demand for its products and strengthening domestic consumption.

“It’s the first time in more than two years that Lithuania’s real GDP is growing on recovering consumption and investment,” Mindaugas Leika, the central bank’s chief-economist, said in the statement.

The Finance Ministry estimates growth of 5.8 percent this year.

The central bank also raised its inflation forecast for this year to 4.4 percent from 3.8 percent and the 2012 outlook to 4.1 percent from 3.9 percent.

The yield on Lithuania’s 10-year bonds rose 0.02 percentage point to 5.18 today.

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