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    2005 inflation in Russia to be 11-11.2% - economics ministry

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    MOSCOW, December 20 (RIA Novosti) - The annual inflation rate in Russia for 2005 is expected to stand at 11-11.2%, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade said Tuesday.

    "We are now oriented to 11-11.2%, which is slightly less than we expected," a deputy minister, Andrei Sharonov, said.

    In early December, the ministry forecasted inflation would be 11-11.5%.

    Sharonov also said the ministry would correct its GDP growth forecasts, but did not say when it would happen.

    Earlier this month, the ministry said annual GDP growth would reach 6%, but Minister German Gref said after a meeting with the president Monday that the figure could be 6.4%.

    According to the minister, inflation in Russia totaled 0.3% in the first 12 days of December, against 0.6% in the first fortnight of December 2004.

    "So far, inflation is half the 2004 figure," Gref said. "Accrued inflation in the second half will be 3%."

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