Namibia records economic growth of N$5.3 billion

Stefanus Nashama

The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) has recorded an economic expansion of N$5.3 billion during the first quarter of the gross domestic product this year.

Alex Shimuafeni, the statistician-general of the NSA, made this announcement in Windhoek on Thursday.

“In nominal terms, the domestic economy was estimated at N$59.1 billion during the first quarter of 2024, an expansion of N$5.3 billion from the corresponding quarter of 2023, which was N$53.9 billion,” he said.

The domestic economy continued to progress positively, with a growth of 4.7 percent in the first quarter of 2024, compared to 5.3 percent in the first quarter of 2023.

According to Shimuafeni, this growth rate indicates the pace at which our economy is expanding and serves as a barometer of economic activity.

Shinuafeni noted that the primary industries, which saw a 5.1 percent growth in real value added, are primarily responsible for the 4.7 percent growth this year.

“The increase in economic activities in the primary industries was mainly stimulated by the mining and quarrying sector, which registered a growth of 6.6 percent on the backdrop of diamond production. However, the uranium sub-sector for the first quarter of 2024 registered a decline of 11.8 percent in real value added in contrast to an increase of 27.4 percent that was posted in the parallel quarter of 2023,” he emphasised.

He revealed that the tertiary industries recorded an improved performance of 4.7 percent during the period under review, compared to a growth of 1.5 percent in 2023.

“The performance was mainly observed in sectors of wholesale and retail trade, with 8.4 percent compared to 7.2 percent in the corresponding quarter of 2023, health witnessed 7.5 percent compared to 1.4 percent in the corresponding quarter of 2023, while financial services recorded 5.3 percent compared to -7.3 percent in the corresponding quarter of 2023,” he stressed.

Shimuafeni further revealed that secondary industries saw a growth of 1.5 percent in real value added this year, compared to 6.7 percent recorded in 2023.

Electricity, water, and construction registered slower performance growth of 9.8 percent and 3.5 percent, compared to 32.9 percent and 26.8 percent witnessed in 2023, respectively.

The manufacturing sector recorded a contraction of 1.4 percent in real value added this year, albeit a slight improvement when compared to a decrease of 2.0 percent reported in 2023.

Shimuafeni further said that private final consumption expenditure grew by 13.4 percent compared to a 0.6 percent decline in 2023. Government spending also increased by 4.1 percent, compared to the 0.4 percent growth recorded in 2023.

He added that oil and gas exploration has expanded by 23.5 percent this year compared to 68.0 percent posted in 2023.

Shimuafeni also examined the export and import of goods, finding that exports of goods and services fell by 17.3 percent this year while imports rose by 4.1 percent.

Shimuafeni reiterated that, despite the slow economic performance this year compared to 2023, all sectors of the economy still achieved positive growth in real value added.

He added that the manufacturing sector declined, although there was improvement compared to the corresponding quarter of the previous year.

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