Jamaica has enjoyed four consecutive quarters of economic growth and is on track for further improvements in the economy.
That’s according to the latest projections from the Planning Institute of Jamaica, PIOJ.
Speaking at their quarterly media briefing this morning, the PIOJ says Jamaica’s fiscal year just ended saw GDP growth in the range of 7 to 9 per cent.
Wayne Walker reports.
Four quarters of economic growth.
According to PIOJ Director General, Dr. Wayne Henry, the country’s pandemic recovery remains in full swing.
According to Dr. Henry, growth in the economy was driven primarily by tourism and the relaxation of COVID-19 measures.
This contributed favourably to increased demand for Jamaica’s tourism product and greater local economic activity spurred by increased employment and business output.
Despite the growth projection, there’s an anticipated downturn in the goods-producing industries due to a downturn in mining.
That decline offset gains in agriculture and other sectors.
However, the services industry grew by just under 9 per cent once again due to gains in the tourism industry.
According to Dr. Henry growth prospects in the short term remain positive, with an expectation of 2 to 4 per cent for the April to June quarter.
However, the Director-General warns that significant headwinds are on the horizon which could severely impact economic activity.
This has caused the PIOJ to revise downward the country’s expected GDP gains for the current fiscal year.
Wayne Walker for Nationwide News.
And Dr. Henry says the National Water Commission lost 240 million dollars in revenue due to the recent industrial action by its workers.
He says the two-day strike on May 10 and 11 also caused major disruption to the productivity of the country.
The PIOJ is assessing the impact of multiple strikes by several public sector groups. Dr. Henry says they’re yet to fully analyse the total cost to the economy.
However, Dr. Henry warns that any further industrial action could hamper the country’s growth projection.
Dr. Wayne Henry, Director General of the Planning Institute of Jamaica.