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Mongolia Economic Growth Slows to 7.2% as Coal Exports Decline

Mongolia’s economic growth slowed in the first quarter after coal prices fell and moderating Chinese demand reduced the nation’s exports.

Gross domestic product, as measured by production in constant prices, grew 7.2 percent from a year ago, the National Statistical Office of Mongolia said on its website today. That compares with the 16.7 percent pace of expansion for the same period last year and a 12.3 percent annual rate for 2012.

The World Bank last month cut its forecast for 2013 Mongolian economic growth to 13 percent from 16.2 percent, citing declines in exports and foreign investment. Economic growth in China, which buys more than 90 percent of Mongolian exports, slowed to 7.7 percent in the first quarter from 7.9 percent in the last three months of 2012.

Mongolia’s exports for the first four months of this year fell 5.5 percent from a year earlier, the statistics office said today. Shipments of coal, the nation’s biggest export, fell by volume to 5 million tons from 5.3 million tons in the same period in 2012, the agency said. The value of the coal exports fell to $338.9 million from $580.3 million a year ago, according to a statement.

The volume of copper concentrate exports was little changed at 186,000 tons in the first four months compared to 186,500 tons a year earlier, the statistics office said. The value of the shipments rose to $276.6 million from $269.5 million a year ago, according to the agency.

Mongolia’s trade deficit narrowed to $528.3 million, 33.7 percent smaller than a year ago, the statistics office said.

The nation’s consumer prices rose 10.4 percent in April from a year earlier and gained 1.1 percent from March, according to the agency.

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