Tanzania says Q3 2014 GDP growth slows, hurt by agriculture

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – Tanzania’s economy grew 6.8 percent in the third quarter of 2014 compared with 7.4 percent in the same period a year ago due to a slowdown in agriculture, construction and transport sectors, data showed on Thursday.

The government sees Tanzania’s economy growing by 7.4 percent this year from an estimated 7.2 percent in 2014 due to expected strong performance of agriculture, construction and manufacturing sectors.

Growth in agriculture, the biggest contributor to the economy, slowed to 2.4 percent from 4.5 percent previously, said the state-run National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in a report.

Construction expanded by 15 percent in the third quarter of 2014 versus a 16.3 percent expansion previously, while transport also slowed to 13.9 percent from 19.3 percent previously.

Manufacturing bucked the trend, expanding 10.8 percent in the third quarter of 2014 versus 10.4 percent previously.

Other sectors that improved include information and communication, which rose by 11.9 percent compared with 7 percent previously, while the mining and quarrying sector rose by 5.2 percent from 3.3 percent previously.

Diamond production in the third quarter of 2014 rose to 66,508 carats from 27,828 carats produced during the same period in 2013, said NBS, pointing to the expansion in mining.

Tanzania is Africa’s fourth largest gold producer, but also produces diamond, tanzanite and other precious stones.

Gold production fell to 10.137 tonnes in the third quarter of last year from 11.01 tonnes previously, the data showed.

Tanzania’s gross domestic product expanded by 32 percent in 2013 to 69.8 trillion Tanzanian shillings after the state rebased its calculation to incorporate new sectors in the economy, including big discoveries of natural gas.

($1 = 1,825.0000 Tanzanian shillings)

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