22 Apr 2010

IMF forecast for NZ seen as too optimistic

9:13 pm on 22 April 2010

An economic forecast by the International Monetary Fund for New Zealand this year may be too optimistic, because it fails to take the impact of the drought into account.

In a twice yearly report on the global economy, the IMF estimates New Zealand will grow 3% this calender year and 3.25% next year.

Much of the growth will be supported by higher commodity export prices, particularly dairy products, which will result in stronger domestic demand as farmers incomes recover.

However, ASB chief economist Nick Tuffley says the IMF's forecasts may be too hopeful.

He says ASB expects growth in 2010 of about 2.1% - lower than previously forecast.

The IMF's forecast is also slightly higher than the Treasury's, which predicts the economy will growth about 2% this year and about 3% in 2011.