Tanzania’s economy slows down in the third quarter

The country's agriculture sector did not perform as expected

The country’s agriculture sector did not perform as expected

The latest government data shows Tanzania output continued to grow during the third quarter, but at a slower rate than prior quarters and at a lower rate than what analysts were expecting to see.

The country’s economic growth eased sharply in the third quarter release in the revised Gross Domestic Product (GDP) series based on the 2007 base year as the global slowdown took its toll.

National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) announced Thursday in Dar es Salaam he national quarterly accounts released indicated the GDP grew by just 6.5 percent in the third quarter, down from 8.6 percent in the corresponding period of 2014.

NBS director of economic statistics Morrice Oyuke said the quarterly GDP increased to Sh10.6trillion in absolute terms compared to Sh9.9trillion in the same period last year.

He said the sectors which contributed to sharp slowdown of GDP include agriculture sector which registered a growth rate of 2.6 percent in the first quarter of 2015 compared to 3.4 percent recorded in the similar quarter last year.

Mining and quarrying activity recorded a growth rate of 0.6 percent down from 19.7 percent in similar quarter last year.

“Gold production in the first quarter was 10,458Kgs compared to 10,710Kgs produced in the corresponding quarter. Diamond production was 72,086 carats compared to 94,278 carats … there was also poor production of Tanzania at 1,606kgs compared to 4,118Kgs last year,” he told reporters in Dar es Salaam.

Manufacturing activity also recorded a growth of 5.7 per cent in the first quarter compared to 8.2 percent.

Other sectors according to latest figures which did not perform very well include; fishing, forestry, livestock, construction and communications.

He also identified sectors that performed well including Public administration and defense which increased by 12.0 percent in 2015 compared to a negative 0.2 percent in 2014. “Education moved to 6.7 percent up from 5.4 percent,” he said.

Prof Amon Mbelle economists pointed out the turnaround in the global economy as the major sources. He said Tanzania had been enjoying export of gold and diamonds however there was little production since the products have not good market like they used to have at the international market.

“This means we have to divert to other sources and sector to stabilize the economy,” he told Afrikareporter