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Economic forecasts for Malaysia raised [18-12-2012]  
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FocusEconomics has revised its growth outlook upward for Malaysia to 4.8 per cent form 4.6 per cent this year.

The Barcelona-based research house has also projected industrial production to grow 3.2 per cent this year and the output to expand three per cent next year.

Economic activity slowed somewhat in the third quarter amid lower demand for Malaysian goods, it added.

The country's gross domestic product eased from a revised 5.6 per cent in the second quarter to a 5.2 per cent increase in the third quarter, mainly due to a contraction in exports.

"That said, recent data showed that the economy gained some momentum at the end of the third quarter, as both exports and industrial production rebounded in September," it said in a report.

Owing to the monthly increase, the trend now points upwards, with annual average growth in industrial production rising from 3.1 per cent in August to 3.3 per cent in September.

Exports are expected to grow only 0.1 per cent in US dollar terms this year, while the trade surplus will narrow to US$35.4 billion from US$41.1 billion (RM108.32 billion from RM125.77 billion) in 2011. For 2013, exports are expected to grow 4.9 per cent, while the trade surplus will reach US$34.4 billion.

FocusEconomics is a leading provider of economic consensus forecasts for more than 70 countries in Asia, Europe and the Americas.

It expects the Consumer Price Index to average 1.8 per cent in 2012 and rise to 2.5 per cent in 2013.

Its panellists expect the Overnight Policy Rate to reach 2.99 per cent this year before rising slightly to 3.12 per cent.

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