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RBC lowers GDP forecast for province

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The Royal Bank has tempered its enthusiasm about Manitoba’s economic growth prospects for this year and 2013.

In its latest quarterly forecast released today, RBC Economics predicts Manitoba will post real gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 2.9 per cent for this year and 3.0 per cent for 2013.

That’s down slightly from its previous forecast issued in September. At that time, it was predicting growth of 3.3 per cent for this year and 3.2 per cent for 2013.

The bank said the downward revision for 2012 was partly due to a smaller than expected canola crop last fall.

It said a 17 per cent increase in agricultural output was one of the main reason’s for this year’s strong overall performance. And while that will be followed by more modest growth of four per cent for that sector in 2013, the bank said the province’s manufacturing sector should help pick up the slack with an increase in sales of buses and aerospace equipment to the United States.

murray.mcneill@freepress.mb.ca

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