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Source: Reuters

BUENOS AIRES, July 10 | Wed Jul 10, 2013 7:41pm EDT

(Reuters) - The Argentine government expects the economy to grow by 4.4 percent this year, a senior government official told reporters on Wednesday, confirming a performance strong enough to trigger $2.8 billion in coupon payments in 2014 on growth-linked bonds.

The forecast, unchanged from the outlook in the 2013 budget, is good news for investors in Argentine government bonds that pay a return that varies according to growth in the country's gross domestic product.

The 2014 coupon payment on the GDP-linked bond is triggered only if GDP expands by more than 3.22 percent in 2013. There will be no such payment this year due to weak growth in 2012.

For much of the past decade following the country's 2001-02 financial crisis, Latin America's No. 3 economy grew at annual rates of above 8 percent, but growth slowed sharply last year to just 1.9 percent. (Reporting by Guido Nejamkis; Writing by Louise Egan)

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