Russia's economy shrinks by 1.9% in first quarter
May 16 , 2015
Russia’s economy shrank by 1.9% in the first quarter of this year, according to data provided by the Russian statistics agency, compared to the 0.4% annual growth of the previous quarter.
Previously, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev had predicted a 2% contraction in the January-to-March period.
The Russian economy has been hit by low global oil prices and western sanctions.
Though President Putin is hopeful of the economy growing again next year, European observers are more pessimistic about such a turnaround.