19 January 2014

Zambia: 'Zambia's Economic Growth to Continue'

PRESIDENT Michael Sata has said the Zambian economy will continue to grow as his Government has continued to promote a stable macro-economic environment.

He said on his facebook page yesterday that according to received preliminary data, the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by seven per cent in 2013 while inflation was on single digit ending the year at 7.1 per cent.

"Commercial banks' lending rates have also been on the decline, averaging 16.3 per cent in 2013 compared to an average of 19.1 per cent in 2012," he said.

Mr Sata said despite pressures on the external value of the Kwacha, the exchange rate moderately depreciated by 6.3 per cent compared to 5.7 per cent in 2012.

He said the performance of the exchange rate in 2013 was better than what was recorded in most sub-Saharan African countries.

He said he concurred with the views of the International Monetory Fund (IMF) that Zambia's economic growth would remain strong at seven to eight per cent and that inflation would also decline gradually to five per cent over the medium term.

"At this pace, I wish to assure the citizens that our Government will continue to foster a stable macroeconomic environment, which will be reflected in low and stable inflation and a competitive exchange rate as well as prudent fiscal management," he said.

Mr Sata said that the idea was to trigger more job opportunities and improve the people's general welfare especially with the unprecedented infrastructure development being undertaken such as the Link Zambia 8000 project, construction of 650 health posts, the upgrading of airports and aerodromes.

The President concluded that he has always been of service to Zambia and he would do his best for the country.

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