The forecast of four per cent negative growth for this year does not need revising, according to the Financial Secretary. The claim from Donald Tsang Yam-kuen came despite figures released yesterday showing the economy had shrunk by 5.2 per cent in the second quarter - 0.2 of a percentage point more than government estimates. The figures confirmed the first recession in 13 years with two consecutive quarters of negative growth. The January-March quarter recorded a downturn of 2.7 per cent. The Government estimated in August the economy would contract by four per cent this year. Six months earlier, it had estimated 3.5 per cent growth. Mr Tsang said yesterday: 'The revised 5.2 per cent negative growth is in line with our estimate of five per cent. 'For the whole year, we estimated a downturn of four per cent. 'This estimate is reliable and does not need to be changed.' He said the economy would continue to be 'affected by external factors', with recovery depending on the performance of key Western markets. There had been some positive signs recently, but a full recovery depended on the global situation. Mr Tsang said he understood the pain suffered by the public because of the recession.