HARARE, May 24 (The Source) – Zimbabwe’s economy will grow by 1.6 percent in 2016 but will improve in 2017, the African Development Bank (AfDB) said on Monday and noting the growth, though positive, will be lower than the continental average of 3.7 percent this year.
AfDB, in its 2016 African Economic Outlook (AEO), released on the side-lines of its on-going annual meeting in Zambia, said Zimbabwe’s economy will likely grow by 3,1 percent next year, but noted that it continued to face structural weaknesses which are constraining its ability to register sustainable growth.
“GDP (Gross Domestic Product) growth declined from 3.8 percent in 2014 to an estimated 1.5 percent in 2015 but is projected to slightly increase to 1.6 percent in 2016,” read the AEO.
“This improvement is due to an anticipated expansion in the tourism, construction and financial sectors.”
The AfDB’s prognosis for the year is largely in line with the government’s own revised forecast of 1.4 percent from an initial forecast of 2.7 percent.
The World Bank, on the other hand, has put the Harare’s economic growth projection for this year at 1.5 percent citing adverse weather conditions as impacting on the key agriculture sector.
The AEO, a joint annual publication of the AfDB, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the United Nations Development Programme, analyses the state of affairs in Africa and provides a two-year forecast.
According to the AEO, Zimbabwe’s real per capita GDP for 2016 will be -0.4 percent and will rebound to 0.8 percent in 2017.
The 2016 AEO is running the theme, “Sustainable Cities and Structural Transformation” in which it is argued that the rate at which Africa urbanises will be critical in determining its future growth and development.