Jordan’s GDP growth ticks up to 2.9% y/y in Q4, averages 2.8% in 2013

By bne IntelliNews April 1, 2014

Jordan's real GDP growth edged up to 2.9% y/y in the fourth quarter of 2013 from 2.8% y/y in Q3 on positive output in the country’s main economic sectors that offset falling contribution from the mining and agriculture sectors, data from the stats office DoS showed. In 2013, the GDP growth also ticked up to 2.8% from 2.7% the year before, on rising government capital spending, higher domestic consumption and a recovery in exports. The full-year reading, however, undershoots the IMF’s optimistic forecast of 3.3% GDP growth but is in line with the EBRD’s 2.9% projection. It is worth noting that spillovers from the Syrian turmoil and the related inflow of refugees into Jordan have weighed on Jordan’s GDP growth in 2013.

The construction sector was again the best performer in Q4, growing 9.4% y/y and speeding up from 7.9% y/y in Q3. Strong local, expat and Arab demand for housing remain the main growth engine. The government services sector was the second best performer in Q4 2013 (up 5.4% y/y) on rising capital spending. The prior-year low base also played a role though. The utilities sector grew 4.5% y/y in Q4 while the financial services, insurance and real estate sector expanded 4.3% y/y, up from 3.7% y/y in Q3.

The transport and logistics sector expanded 3.7% y/y (down from 5.1% in Q3) due to sustained activity though Iraq and the GCC.

The agriculture output shrank 13.3% y/y in Q4, swinging from a 4.5% growth the previous quarter on unfavourable weather factors. The mining and quarrying output dropped 12.2% y/y in Q4 on lower external demand and commodity prices.

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