April 20, 2017 / 9:51 AM / 3 months ago

Russia Fin Min wants economy to grow at least 3 pct a year

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MOSCOW, April 20 (Reuters) - Russia's finance ministry has "ambitious goals" of bringing the country's economic growth in to line with the world's average growth level of at least 3-3.5 percent, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Thursday.

To boost the economy, which contracted 0.2 percent in 2016, Russia needs to implement structural reforms and, first of all, reduce its dependence on oil exports, Siluanov said.

This year, the government expects the economy to shrug off a collapse in oil prices and the impact of western sanction to expand by 2 percent.

Presenting his ministry's performance review, Siluanov said another way to spur the economy was to improve collection of taxes by solving an issues with Russia's large shadow economy. The shadow sector payroll exceeds 10 trillion roubles ($177.73 billion) a year, he said. ($1 = 56.2653 roubles) (Reporting by Darya Korsunskaya; Writing by Andrey Ostroukh; Editing by Jack Stubbs)

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