‘Africa records 4.8 per cent growth in 2014’

Sub-Saharan African growth moderated to 4.8 per cent in 2014 from 5.2 per cent in 2013, Dr. Henry Kofi Wampah, Governor of Bank of Ghana has said.

He said the pace of expansion was slow in some of the larger economies as a result of subdued global demand, soft commodity prices, weak foreign direct investment flows and infrastructure constraints.

“However, growth was strong in Nigeria and some of the region’s low-income countries,” he said.

Dr. Wampah said these at the Monetary Policy Committee press briefing in Accra on the macroeconomic situation in Ghana against the background of developments in the global economy.

He said in the January 2015 update of the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook, global growth remained unchanged at 3.3 per cent in 2014 compared to 2013.

The Governor said, however, that growth was projected to pick up to 3.5 per cent in 2015 and further to 3.7 per cent in 2016.

He said in advanced economies, growth was lower than expected in the Euro Area and Japan, however in the United States, apart from a temporary contraction at the beginning of 2014, growth was above potential and reached its fastest pace since 2003.

Dr. Wampah indicated that in emerging markets and developing economies growth slowed to 4.4 per cent in 2014, from 4.7 per cent in 2013 reflecting cyclical factors, domestic policy tightening, and political tension in countries such as China and Russia.

He said global inflation had remained subdued on the back of falling oil prices and weak demand.

Dr. Wampah said in the outlook, inflation pressures were expected to remain low due to spare capacity, tighter policies and declining commodity prices.

He said in the international commodity markets, crude oil was projected to average $52.8 per barrel.

Dr. Wampah said gold prices were projected to average $1,276 per ounce in 2015, while cocoa was projected at about $2,995 per tonne in 2015, declaring that these developments would have implications for the domestic economy.

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