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Taiwan hikes growth forecast

Taipei - Taiwan on Friday raised its full-year economic growth forecast for 2014 to a three-year-high of 2.98 percent, citing rising private investment and consumer spending.

The government revised the gross domestic product figure upward from an estimate of 2.82 percent made in February.

If achieved it will be the island's highest growth since 2011 when the economy posted a rise of 4.19 percent.

Full-year private investment was forecast to increase 4.73 percent, boosted by an expansion in semiconductor, aviation and telecommunication sectors while consumer spending was expected to grow 2.58 percent, Taiwan's Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics said.

The agency also raised the first quarter growth forecast to 3.14 percent on-year, up from a 3.04 percent prediction made in February, although 2013 full-year economic growth was downgraded by 0.02 percentage points to 2.09 percent.

Growth in Taiwan's export-reliant economy has been buoyed by a steady economic recovery in developed countries as well as improved domestic consumption.

Taiwan's exports rose 6.2 percent on-year in April in the third consecutive monthly increase, thanks to growing demands from most major overseas markets, particularly for electronics products such as microchips and solar batteries.

Full-year exports in 2014 were forecast to rise 3.1 percent to $314.9 billion, according to the budgeting agency. - Sapa-AFP

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