Namibia’s economy contracted for the fourth consecutive quarter in the three months through June, dragged down by mining and agriculture.
Gross domestic product shrank by 2.6% from a year earlier, compared with a revised 2.9% decrease in the first quarter, Statistician General Alex Shimuafeni told reporters Thursday in the capital, Windhoek.
More than half of the sectors in the economy declined, Shimuafeni said. The key drivers of the decrease were mining and quarrying, which was down by 20.2%, agriculture, which shrank 28.1% and construction, which contracted by 5.5%.
The southwest African economy has now contracted for eight of the last nine quarters. While the international Monetary Fund said last week GDP will return to growth in 2020 after shrinking for three straight years, the Bank of Namibia forecasts a 1.7% contraction this year. The Monetary Policy Committee cut its benchmark interest rate for the first time in two years last month to help boost expansion and maintain the country’s currency’s peg to the South African rand.
“The significant reduction in economic activities is attributed to continued austerity measures by the government, weak domestic demand for goods and services, reduced disposable income coupled with drought conditions affecting most households,” Shimuafeni said.
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