Jamaican Economy Grew by 6.4% in the First Quarter of 2022
- The Jamaican economy grew by 6.4% during the first quarter of 2022 when compared to the first quarter of 2021. A respective 8.9% and 0.4% growth in the Services and Goods Producing Industries were the primary drivers of this performance.
- The easing of COVID-19 containment measures, including the withdrawal of the Disaster Risk Management Order during the period, positively impacted economic activity which supported the expansion in output.
- All industries within the Services Industries grew: Hotels & Restaurants (107.1%), Wholesale & Retail Trade; Repairs; Installation of Machinery & Equipment (8.8%), Transport, Storage & Communication (8.8%), Other Services (12.4%), Finance & Insurance Services (0.7%), Real Estate, Renting & Business Activities (1.1%), Producers of Government Services (0.4%) and Electricity & Water Supply (1.4%).
- The performance of the Hotels & Restaurants industry was due to growth in hotels & other short-stay accommodations and restaurants, bars & canteens. The 230.1% increase in foreign national arrivals during the period positively impacted this industry. This sector could see a further improvement in its performance as the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) is projecting that the country will welcome approximately 800,000 visitors for the 2022 summer period with destination earnings exceeding US$1.1Bn.
- Within the Goods Producing Industries, higher output levels were recorded for Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing (8.2%), Manufacturing (4.0%) and Construction (3.5%). However, the Mining & Quarrying industry declined by 60.0%. The Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing industries benefitted from favourable weather conditions which influenced greater output.
- The IMF currently expects the economy to grow by 2.5% this calendar year. This will continue to be supported by a recovery in the tourism sector which is expected to see its strongest summer ever, greater consumer demand for other services, and higher private consumption. However, the high inflation and interest rate environment poses downside risks to this forecast.
(Source: STATIN & NCBCM Research)