International Monetary Fund predicts India will grow at 7.3% in 2018-’19

PM Imran Khan chairing the Punjab cabinet meeting. — PTI

PM Imran Khan chairing the Punjab cabinet meeting. — PTI

"In Angola, the region's second largest oil exporter, real GDP is expected to shrink by 0.1 per cent in 2018, following a 2.5 per cent contraction in 2017, but is projected to increase by 3.1 per cent in 2019". It was the first downgrade since July 2016.

At the top of the list are worries about emerging economies, especially Argentina and Turkey, two countries with heavy external debt that have had to raise interest rates sharply in recent months. "Several of the downside risks highlighted in the April 2018 World Economic Outlook (WEO) ... have become more pronounced or have partially materialized".

The IMF said there was a "risk of contagion" as investors became increasingly nervous about the strength of emerging markets, with the risk of capital flows towards the U.S. accelerating.

"There are clouds on the horizon", Obstfeld added.

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To offset the effects of Federal Reserve rate rises, USA trade tariffs and domestic economic pressure caused by tighter financial regulation aimed at reducing debt risks in China's financial system, the Chinese authorities have eased monetary policy and the implementation of proposed new financial regulations.

If the trade war continues, it could take a significant bite out of global growth, according to the fund. However, the RBI pegged India's growth projections at 7.5 per cent. India's medium-term growth prospects remain strong at 7.75 per cent, benefitting from ongoing structural reform, but have been marked down by just under 0.5 percentage point relative to the April 2018 WEO, the International Monetary Fund said.

The IMF's cut to its outlook was broad-based.

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China's growth is still expected to be more than 6% next year, but the IMF's chief economist Maurice Obstfeld warned Beijing to concentrate on quality and sustainability of growth, not quantity of growth. In 2017, India had clocked a 6.7% growth rate.

The exercise assumes that US President Donald Trump imposes tariffs on the remaining $267 billion worth of Chinese goods imports not already under punitive tariffs and China retaliates in kind. The IMF projections don't take into account Mr Trump's threat to expand the tariffs to effectively all of the more than US$500 billion in goods the U.S. bought from China a year ago.

It said the Saudi economy, which contracted by 0.9 percent last year, is expected to grow by 2.2 percent in 2018 and 2.4 percent next year, raising previous projections by 0.5 percent.

He said although the region would witness growth next year but the growing number of working class coupled with less jobs opportunities, huge public debts and poor infrastructure present a challenge in achieving the developmental goals of the United Nations.

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Back in Asia, Japan's Nikkei had dropped 1.3 per cent, hurt in part by a rise in the safe-harbor yen and as yields on Tokyo's government bonds prodded the 0.15-per-cent cap the Bank of Japan effectively has on them.

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