BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s economic contraction in the first quarter was no surprise to the government, Economy Minister Paulo Guedes said on Thursday, adding that he is confident of recovery but only if fiscal and economic reforms are implemented.

“We were already anticipating a rather stagnant economy in the first quarter, but we are confident that the recovery is coming,” he told reporters in Brasilia. “We need reforms for growth to resume.”

Brazil’s gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 0.2% from the prior quarter, statistics agency IBGE said on Thursday, the first contraction since 2016 and in line with the median estimate in a Reuters poll.

Reporting by Marcela Ayres; Writing by Jamie McGeever; Editing by Chizu NomiyamaOur Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.