President of the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica, William Mahfood, says he’s surprised that the economy is back in recession.

Mr. Mahfood says he was expecting growth in the December quarter of last year.

Mr Mahfood says he’s not worried because of the increase in business and consumer confidence.

He also says that investment is picking up and the exchange rate isĀ  stable.

The Planning Institute of Jamaica, PIOJ, yesterday revealed that the economy contracted by 0-point-3 percent between October and December last year — following on a contraction in the previous quarter.

With two consecutive quarters of contraction, the Jamaican economy is now back in recession.

But the PIOJ is projecting that growth will rebound between January and March this year — between the range of 0-point-5 to 1-point-5 percent.

Mr. Mahfood is cautious about that projection.

William Mahfood, President of the PSOJ.

Meanwhile, Chairman of the Opposition JLP’s Economic Advisory Council, Aubyn Hill, says the country has reached this point because of the lack of a clear growth plan.

He says the Prime Minister needs to focus on such a plan.

Aubyn Hill, Chairman of the JLP’s Economic Advisory Council.