According to data from the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN), the country is on track to get back to the economic output level before COVID-19 by 2023.
Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, Minister of Finance and the Public Service said that if the goal is met, Jamaica will be “far ahead of our Caribbean peers.”
“We are at 97 per cent of our pre-COVID levels of economic output. We went all the way down to 82 per cent, [but are] back up to about 97 per cent. [This] is related to the fact that we were able to maintain macro stability through the crisis,” Dr Clarke said.
Because of how well the economy has been doing, S&P Global Ratings kept Jamaica’s “B+” rating and “Stable” outlook on the economy on Wednesday, October 5.
Minister Clarke told the Rotary Club of Kingston’s luncheon at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston on Thursday, October 6, that the economy is “performing better than planned” based on GDP data from STATIN.
Statin said the economy grew by 4.8% from April to June 2022 to the same time last year.
This was due to an increase of 7.2% in the Services Industry, even though the Goods Producing Industry went down by 2%.
The Services Industry’s result was better because all eight subsectors did better.
Hotels and restaurants grew the most, by 56%. Wholesale and retail trade, repairs, and installation of machinery and equipment also grew by 7.6%.
Transport, Storage, and Communications went up 5.7%, Real Estate, Renting, and Business Activities went up 2.1%, Electricity and Water Supply went up 2%, and Finance and Insurance Services went up 1.1%.
Clarke said that as the economy slowly started to open up again and people were able to go back to work, Jamaica started to recover at a “very fast pace”. The country is expected to grow by 8% in 2022 and by 4.5% this year.
“As a result of this recovery, we are experiencing over performance, which is always a good thing. We have a lot of work to do. But there is no doubt about our trajectory… and [based on] the fact that we have been able to recover so quickly… we can look forward [to] the fruits of the stability that we enjoy,” he added.
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