16 de junio de 2014 / 17:33 / en 3 años

UPDATE 1-Peru posts slowest growth rate in nearly 5 yrs in April

(Recasts first paragraph, adds details on growth in April, context on slowing economy)

LIMA, June 16 (Reuters) - Peru’s economy grew at the slowest pace in nearly five years in April, expanding 2 percent from the same month in 2013 because of a drop in the pivotal mining and construction sectors, the government said on Monday.

A Reuters poll last week forecast 2.85 percent expansion in April, the second month in a row that official figures have come in under market expectations.

The Andean country’s economy has slowed from growth rates topping 6 percent over the past decade as prices and demand for its mineral exports have ebbed.

The last time the fast-growing country posted such weak monthly expansion was in October of 2009, during the global financial crisis.

The economy expanded 5.28 percent in the 12 months through April and 4 percent in the first four months of the year, compared with the prior-year periods, the state statistics agency Inei said at a press conference.

The central bank and finance ministry have attributed the relatively slow economic growth of recent months to weaker-than-expected mineral output from some of the country’s biggest mines.

In April, mining activity fell 9.6 percent and construction 8.9 percent. Mining alone accounts for about 15 percent of gross domestic product, while the construction sector has helped offset tumbling mineral exports in recent years as it has surged on domestic demand.

Growth in April was led by retail and agricultural activity, while manufacturing barely grew over the same month in 2013.

In April of last year, the economy expanded by 8.76 percent year-on-year, a result helped by two additional working days that were lost this year because of a holiday.

The central bank sees Peru’s potential growth rate at 6 percent and is forecasting a 5.5 percent expansion this year.

The economy grew at a seasonally adjusted rate of 0.1 percent in April compared with March, Inei said.

Peru is a top global exporter of copper, silver, gold and zinc.

Reporting by Teresa Cespedes; Editing by James Dalgleish and Dan Grebler

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