UPDATE 1-Economic growth in Azerbaijan slows to 1 pct in 2015

Sun Jan 10, 2016 1:02pm GMT

(Adds details, background)

By Nailia Bagirova

BAKU Jan 10 (Reuters) - Azerbaijan's economic growth slowed to 1 percent last year from 2.8 percent in 2014, well below official forecasts, due to low oil prices and the devaluation of the national manat currency, the country's president said on Sunday.

The country had forecast 3.3 percent growth for 2015.

"Decline in world oil prices and the national currency devaluation had a negative impact on Azerbaijan's economy," Ilham Aliyev told a government meeting.

"Reasons for such a difficult situation are outside our country and these reasons are rather political, than economic," he added.

Aliyev said the non-oil sector grew by 8.4 percent last year.

Economic growth in Azerbaijan has slowed dramatically since the oil boom of 2003-2007, when the economy expanded by an average of 21 percent per year.

The Azeri economy is now suffering from low energy prices and the repercussions of an economic crisis in neighbouring Russia.   Continued...

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