Azerbaijani Economy 11 january — 12:30

Samir Sharifov on growth of Azerbaijan's foreign currency reserves

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Azerbaijan's aggregate foreign currency reserves grew by more than 13 per cent, said Finance Minister Samir Sharifov at a Cabinet of Ministers meeting held the day before under the chairmanship of President Ilham Aliyev and dedicated to the results of socio-economic development in 2017 and forthcoming tasks.

According to Azerbaijan State News Agency, the minister noted that according to operative data, the foreign trade turnover for 11 months of 2017 amounted to 21.8 billion dollars, which is 12 per cent more than the same period of 2016.

'Exports of goods grew by 19 per cent and exceeded $14 billion. It is especially worth noting that the export of non-oil products grew by 24 per cent. In general, the trade balance formed a surplus of more than six billion dollars, and as a result, the country's aggregate foreign currency reserves increased by 4.5 billion dollars or 13.3 per cent since the beginning of the year,' said the minister.

According to Sharifov, the revenues and expenditures of the state budget for 2017 were fulfilled by 98 per cent compared to the approved forecast and amounted to 16.447 billion and 17.588 billion manats respectively.

Sharifov added that in spite of the fact that budget revenues were 736 million manats less than the forecast, the expenses of budget organisations were fully covered at the expense of approved state budget expenditures. He noted that several factors contributed to this. Thus, customs revenues were 16 per cent or 359 million manats more than the forecast, also additional volumes of government short-term bonds were realised on the domestic market and efficiency of public spending was increased.

'The deficit of the state budget was 34 million manats less than the approved upper limit. It is especially worth noting the positive dynamics recorded in the execution of the consolidated budget. So, if the deficit of the consolidated budget was predicted at the level of 7.6 billion or 11.1 per cent of GDP, then by the end of last year it amounted to one billion manats or 1.5 per cent of GDP,' said the minister.

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