Mongolia 2010 GDP growth seen at 7.5 pct-govt official

LONDON, Nov 24 (Reuters) - Mongolia's gross domestic product (GDP) should grow by 7.5 percent in 2010, a senior government official said on Wednesday.

Ganzorig Baasankhuu, chairman of Mongolia's foreign investment and foreign trade agency, told a conference: "We project GDP growth of 7.5 percent in 2010, one of the highest in the world."

Growth was 5 percent in the first half of the year, Ganzorig said, speaking through an interpreter. He did not give a figure for 2009 growth. Data from multilateral organisations show the economy contracted 1.6 percent last year after growing 8 percent in 2008.

Kevin Bortz, director of natural resources at the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development told the conference Mongolia's growth was forecast at 9 percent in 2011.

Landlocked Mongolia sits on vast quantities of untapped mineral wealth. Analysts say it could be one of the fastest growing economies of the next decade, as well as a key investment target for global mining giants.

Mining had accounted for over 60 percent of total foreign direct investment received so far, Ganzorig added.

(Reporting by Carolyn Cohn, editing by Sujata Rao)

Source:Reuters news service
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