Ukraine’s economy after falling by 5.1% in 2020 will grow by 4% this year, with a slight increase in inflation (December from December) from 5% to 5.8% -6%, Citi analysts stated in the forecast of the global economy.
In their opinion, consumer spending will become the key growth driver against the backdrop of a planned 30% increase in the minimum wage from UAH 5,000 to UAH 6,500.
The experts expect the economy to recover to pre-crisis levels in the first quarter of 2022, generally assessing growth prospects in 2022 at 3% with inflation falling to 5.3%.
The bank forecasts that the National Bank will increase the refinancing rate by 50 b.p. in the second quarter of 2021, to 6.5% in order to balance price pressure caused by the rise in inflation. In particular, Citi expects the consumer price index to rise to 5.8% by the end of 2021.
According to the survey, the analysts predict the weakening of the hryvnia exchange rate by the end of this year to UAH 29.47/$1 with an average annual value of UAH 28.92/$1, and in the next year to UAH 30.67/$1 and 30.12 UAH/$1, respectively.
The analysts noted the institutional regression that occurred in 2020, but they are inclined to believe that the need to finance a large budget deficit will be an incentive for Ukrainian authorities to continue cooperation with the IMF. In their opinion, ensuring the independence of the National Bank and finding a way out of the situation that arose after the Constitutional Court had recognized a number of anti-corruption norms as unconstitutional will be of decisive importance.