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Finance Ministry projects average 5.4 percent GDP growth for 2005-2008

SLOVAKIA has a good chance of achieving relatively high economic growth in the 2005-2008 period that should reach 5.4 percent per year on average, according to the updated prognosis of macroeconomic and fiscal development prepared by the Slovak Finance Ministry.

"The growth rate is sustainable, reflecting qualitative changes in the economy, the growth of labour productivity and capital, increases in potential products and competitiveness," states the Finance Ministry.

The ministry's spokesman, Peter Papanek, told the SITA news agency that the GDP growth will culminate in 2007. Growth should exceed 6 percent, due to the influence of several positive external factors.

"We expect economic growth in Slovakia's important trade partners, an influx of foreign direct investments in Slovakia and higher drawing of the EU funds and contributions," said Papanek.

According to the ministry, a sustainable economic growth will create more job opportunities and support employment growth.

"The conservative estimate for employment growth is around 0.8 percent annually," said Papanek.

Increased labour productivity and reduced inflation should create preconditions for a stable growth of real wages as well.

Compiled by Martina Jurinová from press reports
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