Tunis/Tunisia — Tunisia recorded a GDP growth rate of 2.5% in the 1st quarter of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017, and 1.0% compared to the last quarter of 2017, the National Institute of Statistics (INS) announced on Tuesday.
The added value of the Agriculture and Fisheries sector edged up 11.9% from January to March 2018, following the noteworthy increase in olive production which more than doubled compared to the previous year, according to data provided by the Agriculture Ministry.
Manufacturing industries' added value up 2.4%
The manufacturing industries' added value was up 2.4% in the 1st quarter of 2018 compared to the same quarter of 2017, and by 2.9% compared to the last quarter.
This improvement is the result of a noticeable increase in the agro-food industries (+ 16.7%), following the noteworthy rise in the production of olive oil and also in the mechanical and electrical industries (+ 5.3%) and the clothing and footwear sector (+ 0.2%), boosted by the improvement in external demand in a context characterised by the improvement of economic indicators in the Euro zone.
On the other hand, the added value in the chemical industry sector dropped by 23.9%, due to the decline in the production of phosphate derivatives.
The construction materials, ceramics and glass industry also fell 5.3%, following the reduction in domestic demand for these products, like cement, whose sales decreased by 6% on the local market.
Non-manufacturing industries edge down 5.3%
The added value of non-manufacturing industries decreased by 5.3% in the 1st quarter of 2018 compared to the same period last year, due to the continued decline in production of the oil and gas extraction sector (-2.4%), the drop in the daily crude oil production to 40,000 barrels while the average was estimated at 45,000 barrels per day during the same period last year and more than 70,000 barrels a day in 2010.
The mining sector also recorded a significant decline of 37.9%, against a rise by 21.3% in the 1st quarter of 2017.
The added value of the building sector fell by 4.7%.
Growth of market services
The market services sector, which accounts for 45% of the national economy, recorded a 3.3% growth in the 1st quarter of 2018, following, among other things, the increase in the added value of the hotel services, restaurants and cafes sector by 9.2%, the financial services by 6.4% and transport services by 3%.
For non-market services (essentially presented by the government), the increase was slight by 0.2%.