TORONTO (AP) — Canada's central bank is maintaining its trendsetting policy rate at the low level of one percent and declaring the monetary stimulus will remain until conditions improve.

The Bank of Canada's new governor, Stephen Poloz, said Wednesday that while real gross domestic product growth in the first quarter of 2013 was stronger than expected, the bank foresees a somewhat more challenging external environment over the projection horizon than previously anticipated.

The bank sees some hope for a pickup in Canadian growth starting in the second half of this year as the U.S. economic recovery firms and helps boost Canadian exports.

The bank expects economy to expand at a rate of 2.7 percent in 2014 and 2015, little change from the April forecast of 2.8 and 2.7 growth in the two years.