Zambia Economic Forecast

Zambia Economic Outlook

November 14, 2017

Economic growth was likely hindered at the end of Q3 by a fall in copper export earnings in September, caused by a sharp drop in sales to overseas markets. The decline in exports led to a deterioration in the trade deficit. Diversifying the economy away from copper mining is central to the 2018 economic plan, affirmed by President Edgar Lungu on 15 October. The IMF has recently pledged USD 1.3 billion in balance of payments support, and the World Bank has promised USD 150 million to aid agricultural development. In the World Bank’s 2018 Doing Business, published on 31 October, Zambia came in among the top ten improvers, following reforms that streamlined taxes, access to credit and trade across borders. The IMF, however, reiterated concerns over the country’s rapidly rising external debt.

Zambia Economic Growth

The economy should expand at a faster pace next year thanks to increased investment and higher agricultural and mining output. An escalating public debt burden continues to cloud the outlook, however. FocusEconomics panelists expect economic growth of 4.6% in 2018, which is up 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 4.8% in 2019.

Zambia Economy Data

Population (million)14.815.215.716.216.7
GDP per capita (USD)1,7251,8011,6611,0461,299
GDP (USD bn)25.527.526.117.021.7
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)8.4-1.925.0-  -  
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-2.8-6.2-5.8-9.5-  
Public Debt (% of GDP)24.925.933.357.5-  
Money (annual variation in %)30.011.811.324.90.1
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)
Policy Interest Rate (%)9.259.7512.5015.5015.50
Exchange Rate (vs USD)5.205.556.4011.009.93
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)5.145.396.168.6610.31
Current Account (% of GDP)2.3-0.82.1-4.5-  
Current Account Balance (USD bn)0.60.1-0.3-0.8-  
Trade Balance (USD billion)
Exports (USD billion)9.410.
Imports (USD billion)8.810.
Exports (annual variation in %)3.812.7-8.9-28.0-11.4
Imports (annual variation in %)22.915.2-6.4-13.51.8
International Reserves (USD)

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Zambia Facts

Bond Yield19.750.0 %Dec 06
Exchange Rate10.380.0 %Dec 06
Stock Market0.20.0 %Dec 06

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