OSLO (Reuters) – Norway’s central bank kept its key interest rate unchanged at 4.50% on Thursday, as expected, and said borrowing costs were likely to remain at that level “for some time “.

The general outlook for the Norwegian economy does not appear to have changed significantly since December, Norges Bank’s monetary policy committee said in a statement.

“The committee believes that the policy rate is now high enough to bring inflation back to its target level within a reasonable time frame,” said Norges Bank Governor Ida Wolden Bache.

In December, the central bank announced a surprise hike in its benchmark rate, even as inflation had fallen from previous peaks, in a bid to counter price pressures and support the currency.

While Norges Bank has left the door open to a possible rate hike, its main scenario is that rates will start to fall towards the end of 2024, as inflation falls.

(Report by Terje Solsvik and Victoria Klesty, by Diana Mandiá, edited by Blandine Hénault)

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