IMF to Revise Up Japan 2021 Growth Rate Forecast

Economy

Washington, Jan. 14 (Jiji Press)--International Monetary Fund spokesman Gerry Rice suggested Thursday that the institution plans to revise up its projection of Japan’s economic growth rate for 2021.

The IMF expects “gradual recovery in Japan” thanks to stimulus measures implemented by the Japanese government amid the novel coronavirus crisis, Rice said in a press conference, suggesting that the upcoming IMF World Economic Outlook report, to be released on Jan. 26, will forecast a higher growth rate for Japan than in the October 2020 report, which predicted the country’s 2021 growth at 2.3 pct.

The spokesman noted that the Japanese economy is expected to slow down in January-March 2021 as major cities in the country have been put under a state of COVID-19 emergency amid a resurgence of infection cases. Under the emergency, the government requests businesses to shorten operating hours and seeks citizens’ voluntary restrictions on going out.

“We expect the recovery to pick up in the second quarter, supported by pent-up demand and restored business confidence along with support from fiscal and monetary policies,” Rice said.

He also said the latest coronavirus state of emergency will have a smaller economic impact than the one declared when infections first surged in Japan in spring last year.

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