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    Morgan Stanley expects Russia's economy to be among the fastest-growing in the world this year despite trailing rivals in foreign investment, the firm's chairman said ahead of the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg

    Morgan Stanley expects Russia's economy to be among the fastest-growing in the world this year despite trailing rivals in foreign investment, the firm's chairman said ahead of the International Economic Forum in St. Petersburg.

    "Our expectation is that the fastest rates of economic growth this year are expected to be in China, India, Brazil and Russia," John Mack said, adding that Russia had to overcome foreign investors' wariness.

    "Russia still has a very strong balance sheet and low overall leverage, which remain key advantages for the country. However, it continues to lag in investment due to the volatile macro environment and weak property rights," the head of the global financial services giant said.

    Mack will participate in a panel entitled "Rethinking Global Economic Trends" at the June 17-19 St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

    "We will discuss how the BRIC economies - and in particular Russia - can play an important role in becoming drivers for global economic growth in the medium term," he said.

    Mack said he was looking forward to attending the annual forum, held this year under the slogan "Laying the Foundation for the Future."

    The Morgan Stanley chief said there were a number of important initiatives that would be discussed at the forum that could help to ensure that Russia remains a destination for global investment and stays on a path to long-term, sustainable growth.

    "It also is an opportunity for Russia to showcase its achievements and the outlook for investment and the Russian economy," he added.

    John Mack started at Morgan Stanley in 1972 and became chairman at the start of the year. The firm is headquartered in New York and has $800 billion in assets under its management.

    RIA Novosti is the St. Petersburg forum's main information partner.

    NEW YORK, June 3 (RIA Novosti)

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