Russia's relatively fast GDP growth, low inflation and unemployment rate are the Russian government's major achievements in the outgoing year despite a slumping global economy, President Dmitry Medvedev said on Tuesday.
By some economic indicators, Russia outperformed some advanced economies in 2011, Medvedev said during his last government meeting in the outgoing year.
“Compared with a large group of developed economies, our growth has been significant: although the GDP growth figure of about 4 percent is not fantastic, it exceeds the figures European countries and the United States demonstrated this year,” the president said.
The U.S. real GDP growth equaled 1.8 percent in the third quarter of 2011.
Medvedev also said that inflation in Russia would hit an historic low in the post-Soviet period in 2011.
“For the first time in Russia’s (modern) history, we have achieved an unprecedented low level of inflation at slightly over six percent,” he said.
The Russian government had been struggling for years to achieve low-digit inflation figures, an important factor to create a favorable investment climate and lure foreign investors.
The third major economic achievement is the unprecedentedly low unemployment rate in Russia, the president said.
“This is also the result of the coordinated activity of all the branches of power and the government as a whole,” Medvedev said.
Russia’s unemployment rate stood at 6.3 percent of the economically active population or 4.8 million people, according to data provided by the Federal State Statistics Service Rosstat.
At the same time, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said that Russia's budget would post a surplus of 0.8-0.9 percent of GDP in 2011.
"For the first time in the last two years we are finishing the year with a surplus. We will have no budget deficit and budget revenues will exceed spending by 0.8 percent of GDP," Putin said, adding that the budget surplus might hit one percent of GDP this year.
Putin said last Wednesday that the country’s GDP amounted to 43 trillion rubles ($1.4 trillion) last year.