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HomeNewsBotswana: IMF concludes visit to Botswana, predicts economic slowdown

Botswana: IMF concludes visit to Botswana, predicts economic slowdown

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that Botswana’s economy will experience a slowdown this year, PANA reported from here.

The IMF growth forecast, after concluding the 2014 Article IV Consultation discussions with Botswana Tuesday, indicated that real GDP growth is expected to moderate to 4.5 percent in 2014,” said Lamin Leigh, head of the visiting IMF team.

“Botswana is undergoing a cyclical recovery in line with its major trading partners. The economy grew faster than expected in 2013 at about 6 percent, owing to the improved performance of the mining sector.

“Looking ahead, real GDP growth is expected to moderate to 4½ percent in 2014, as the slowdown in diamond recovery and continued problems in electricity production and water supply will likely soften the pace of economic activity,” he added.

IMF said the non-mineral sector slowed down from about 6 percent in 2012 to about 5 percent in 2013, partly reflecting recurring power supply disruptions and to some extent the drought.

In addition, the Fund noted that for the first time in 15 years, both headline and core inflation stayed well inside the Bank of Botswana’s medium-term objective range of 3-6 percent for a considerable period, which is a testimony to the authorities’ good macroeconomic management.

Meanwhile, the preliminary IMF data show that the government also recorded a small surplus in the fiscal year 2013/14 in the fiscal accounts by reining in current expenditure along with higher mining revenue.

“On the external front, the current account balance turned into a surplus in 2013 supported by a rebound in diamond exports,” the IMF said

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