October 19 (SeeNews) - Romanian central bank deputy governor Cristian Popa said the country is likely to meet the budget deficit target for this year agreed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as part of a bailout package, Bloomberg reported.
"The figures look promising, because the nine-month data of budget execution are below the targets" set by the IMF and the European Union, Popa told Bloomberg (www.bloomberg.com) in an interview on Friday.
"I’m hoping the annual figures will come out as planned in the multilateral financing program."
In August Romania raised its budget deficit forecast for this year to 7.3% of GDP from 4.6% forecast earlier, in the second budget revision this year, to match the projections made in a 20 billion euro ($29.8 billion) aid agreement with the IMF, the European Union and the World Bank signed in late March.
The country's Finance Minister Gheorghe Pogea has said he expects the country's economy to shrink by between 8.0% and 8.5% this year, after expanding by a real 7.1% in 2008.
"We need to consolidate the positive things of bottoming out, to slow down negative growth," Popa said.
He added that the government in Bucharest expects an economic growth between 0.5% and 1.0% next year, as the economies of trading partners improve and domestic investment and consumption picks up.
"Our forecast is for small positive growth, while we keep inflation on the downward path consistent with the targets."