TAIPEI, April 25 (Xinhua) -- Taiwan's economy is expected to expand by 2.04 percent in 2017 as foreign trade is ramping up amid a warming global economy, the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research (TIER), a leading economic think tank in Taiwan, announced Tuesday.
The forecast is higher than the previous estimate in January, when the think tank said the economy would grow by 1.78 percent.
TIER is the third think tank in Taiwan to raise the 2017 GDP growth forecast to more than 2 percent.
TIER President Lin Chien-fu said the increase was boosted by strong foreign trade growth thanks to an improving global economy. But he also warned of uncertainties in raw material prices, and consumers' reaction to the new iPhone might weaken the pace of economic growth in the second half.
Private consumption is expected to grow 1.93 percent in 2017, basically unchanged from the prediction of 1.91 percent in January because of wage stagnation and price rises, TIER said.
Fixed capital formation is expected to grow 2.20 percent this year as production of integrated circuit and semiconductors continues to expand.
The think tank also raised its forecast for Taiwan's export and import growth to 4.35 percent and 4.31 percent, respectively, as foreign trade is expected to benefit from higher growth in the mainland, Japan and other economies as predicted by the IMF.