CIER forecasts 2015 GDP growth of 3.56 percent
Taiwan’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow 3.56 percent from a year earlier, the Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research (CIER,
), one of Taiwan’s leading think tanks, said Thursday.
The latest forecast is upgraded from a previous prediction of a 3.50 percent year-on-year rise, largely in reflection of higher private consumption and private investment, according to the CIER.
The think tank said that Taiwan’s private consumption for 2015 is expected to grow 3.02 percent from a year earlier, com- pared with an earlier forecast of a 2.78 percent increase, while the country’s private investment could rise 6.02 percent for 2015, up from a previous estimate of 5.59 percent.
Despite the forecast upgrade, the CIER prediction is still lower than the government’s forecast of a 3.78 percent GDP increase issued in mid-February.
The think tank said that as major central banks around the world continue to pump funds into the market, high global liquidity levels are expected to be maintained, which is expected to give a boost to private consump- tion and investment in Taiwan.
While the CIER has raised its forecast for Taiwan’s private consumption and investment for 2015, the think tank has lowered its prediction for Taiwan’s exports after taking disappointing export data for the first quarter of this year into account.
In the January-March period, Taiwan’s exports fell 4.2 percent from a year earlier to US$70.25 billion due to falling outbound sales value in chemical and rubber products resulting from a plunge in international crude oil prices.
the CIER has
cut its forecast for merchandise and service exports for 2015 to 6.26 percent from an earlier forecast of a 7.35 percent increase, while it has also lowered its prediction for merchandise and service imports to 5.58 percent from 6.36 percent.
CIER President Wu Chung-shu ( ) said that the upgrade of Taiwan’s 2015 GDP growth forecast shows that the local economy remains on the road to recovery. Wu said that the think tank remains upbeat about the outlook of the local information and communication technology sector, adding that the sector is expected to continue to serve as a driver of Taiwan’s economic growth.
The think tank also said that due to strong global demand for mobile devices, Taiwanese semiconductor makers are expected to increase their investments.
The CIER said it has lowered its forecast for Taiwan’s consumer price index growth for 2015 to 0.37 percent from an earlier estimate of 0.89 percent, and has also lowered its prediction for the country’s jobless rate to 3.72 percent from 3.90 percent.
For 2016, the CIER said, Taiwan’s economy is expected to grow 3.41 percent, representing moderate growth.