NEWSWATCH: “Amid international pressure, Russia’s economy is a mix of the good, the bad and the ugly” – CNBC/Dawn Kissi

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“… Russia ‘maintained strong growth underpinned by solid productivity, with a sustainable growth trend estimated at 2-2.5 percent,’ … [but] the rebound obscures … ‘one of the few countries in the world with negative population growth, which reduces their overall growth potential.’ The population shrinkage – by some measures at around 0.4 percent – dampens productivity, making growth above 2 percent difficult to sustain. … [In addition] Russia’s market is volatile, and the geopolitical risks have heightened that effect. Meanwhile, Moscow is notorious for presiding over an opaque, corrupt and oligarch-dominated economy that gets low marks from freedom watchers. …”

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