Pressure on major sectors due to water shortage to continue

24 Jun 2016 11:00am
WINDHOEK, 24 JUN (NAMPA) - The drought and short supply of clean water in Namibia will continue to put pressure on major sectors, such as construction.
This is the view of local financial services firm, Simonis Storm Securities in an analysis titled ‘Growth threats as construction activities crash first quarter of 2016 (1Q2016)’ issued on Tuesday.
“The supply of water remains a major challenge in Namibia and has affected other growth sectors such as the construction sector. The water and electricity sector will remain under pressure as the drought persists,” it warned.
The manufacturing sector is another big consumer of water.
If the problem is not given the right attention, Simonis expects more industries to move or cut production similar to Namibia Breweries, or seek alternative water sources such as private boreholes.
The electricity and water sector grew at a slower pace of 9.4 per cent compared to 14.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2015 but better than the 0.6 per cent growth rate recorded during the last quarter of 2015.
Meanwhile, the agricultural sector reduced by 12.2 per cent during the first quarter of 2016 compared to 2.1 per cent recorded in the first quarter of 2015.
“The contraction can be attributed to the poor rainy season this year. Crop farming was affected negatively during the first quarter of 2016 and has led to higher demand for maize products from other countries,” it noted.
Meanwhile, due to the drought, Namib Mills announced a 16 per cent increase in the price of maize meal in February this year, mainly on the back of shortages in local production and because of high import costs from other countries.