Macroeconomic Report & Economic Updates
August 19, 2017
Africa Economic Update (Issue 5)
Available data shows that headline inflation reduced in most countries in the region in May 2017 relative to preceding months. Notably, headline inflation decreased in Nigeria (16.25 percent), Ghana (12.26 percent), Tanzania (6.1 percent), Senegal (1.8 percent), Namibia (6.3 percent) and Rwanda (11.7 percent), while it grew in South Africa (5.4 percent), Kenya (11.7 percent), Ethiopia (8.7 percent) and Uganda (7.2 percent). Cote dIvoire (-0.4 percent) recorded consumer price deflation. The decrease in consumer price in Nigeria, Tanzania and Ghana can be attributed to decreases in both food and non-food components of inflation. Regionally, all countries in Southern Africa recorded single digits inflation, however consumer price marginally increased in South Africa, for the first time in 2017 owing to spike in food prices6, and Botswana (both by 0.1 percent).
Latest World Economic Outlook (WEO) report by the International Monetary Fund reveals that Nigerias economy will grow by 1.9 percent in 2018 an unchanged stance from earlier projections. However, the figure is 2.9 percentage points lower than the 4.8 percent 2018 estimated growth rate in Nigerias ERGP (Economic Recovery and Growth Plan) 2 showing a very large disparity between domestic and international growth forecasts for Nigeria. The Funds projection however seems to have taken into cognizance underlying factors that could slow growth in the medium term: faster pace of population growth relative to GDP growth3, poor policy implementation, banking system fragilities and foreign exchange market segmentation.
International Monetary Fund (IMF) revised down growth forecast for Sub-Saharan Africa by 0.2 percentage points, while retaining growth estimates for Nigeria and South Africa in 2017. Precisely, growth rate forecast for Africa was reduced from 2.8 percent in January 2017 forecast to 2.6 percent in April 2017 forecast while growth estimates were retained at 0.8 percent for both South Africa and Nigeria. In contrast, global economic growth outlook was increased by 0.4 percentage points from 3.1 percent to 3.5 percent within the same period. Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa is hampered by adverse cyclical and supply side factors, weak fiscal buffers and rising public debt amongst non-commodity exporters as well as severe drought was experienced in Eastern and Southern Africa
Recent media highlights suggest that there is a prospective decrease in Nigerias budgetary benchmark crude oil production. Precisely, the 1.8 million barrels per day proposed at the Joint OPEC and Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) meeting, is 18.2 percent lower than the budgetary production benchmark of 2.2 million barrels per day. This followed OPECs recent review to include Nigeria in the ongoing production cut agreement amid concerns of global oil market oversupply, given the constant production increase from Nigeria over the last few months.