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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — A top government official says Malaysia's economy is expected to grow between 4.5 and 5.5 percent next year, bolstered by domestic demand.
The official, who asked that his name be withheld in line with rules governing press briefings, says growth this year is likely to be near 5 percent and the momentum will be carried forward into 2013 despite external uncertainties.
The official says the 2013 budget, to be unveiled in parliament Friday, will be "mildly expansionary but fiscally responsible."
Analysts expect cash handouts and other goodies as the National Front ruling coalition seeks to win support ahead of general elections that must be called by April.
The official says the coalition is confident of obtaining a "very comfortable" margin in upcoming polls.