10 Feb 2014 18:40pm
WINDHOEK, 10 FEB (NAMPA) - Namibia's real gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to increased by 5 per cent in 2014 after which it is projected to slow to 4.8 per cent in 2015.
This is according to a 2013 Quarterly Economic Update issued by the Ministry of Finance on Monday.
It indicated that economic activity in Namibia improved considerably in the third quarter of 2013 as the economy expanded by 5.3 per cent year-on-year, up from 2.7 per cent in the second quarter.
The third quarter started in July and ended September 2013.
Manufacturing grew by 15.2 per cent year-on-year and contributed 1.7 percentage points (pp) to overall growth, wholesale and retail trade, which recorded growth of 11.6 per cent and contributed 1.6pp to overall growth, and agriculture, which expanded by 31.9 per cent year-on-year and contributed 1.1 pp to overall growth.
The report explained that the growth in manufacturing can be attributed to impressive growth in the other manufacturing, manufacturing of other food products and meat processing sub-sectors, while strong sales of livestock due to the recent drought conditions accounted for the ongoing rapid growth in agriculture.
Meanwhile, transport and communication also recorded robust growth of 6.8 per cent year-on-year, compared to the negative growth of 3.8 per cent in the second quarter.
However, these impressive performances were offset by a reversal in fortunes in the fishing sector and continued weakness in hotels and restaurants.
The former contracted by 8.3 per cent year-on-year in the third quarter of 2013 down from 7.0 per cent growth in the second quarter, while the latter contracted by 9.1 per cent year on year, the report said.
This however, marked an improvement compared to the contraction of 31.2 per cent year-on-year recorded in the second quarter. The weak performance in this sector is mainly due to reduced tourism activities.
The report said the improved performance of the Namibian economy during the third quarter of 2013 means that the ministry's estimate of robust full year growth of 4.8 per cent in 2013 remains relevant.
However, with risks still weighted firmly to the downside, developments will continue to be monitored closely, the report said.