Tunisia's industrial production grew 1.6% y/y in 2013, slowing from a 1.8% y/y expansion a year earlier, mainly on falling energy output as the manufacturing sector’s activity strengthened, the statistics office, INS, said. Excluding energy, industrial output growth rebounded to 2.3% y/y in 2013 from 1.1% a year earlier. The final 2013 reading copes well with the central bank’s cautious stance by keeping the key rate on hold, seeking to spur economic growth amid subdued inflation.
Overall manufacturing output (77.7% of the index) rose 2.1% y/y in 2013, quickening from 1.0% growth in 2012. Manufacturing growth was lifted by strong activity in chemicals, construction materials, textiles and clothing sectors.
The food industry’s output grew 1.9% y/y in 2013, cooling from a 4.2% expansion the year before. Olive oil and fats production was the main growth engine.
A strong EU demand continued to boost textiles production in 2013, rising 3.2% y/y and reversing a 2.8% y/y contraction a year earlier.
Chemicals production expanded 4.6% y/y, whereas that of energy (18.93% of the index) shrank 1.8% y/y in 2013.
The mining output (3.39% of the basket) climbed 12.4% y/y in 2013, accelerating from a 7.9% increase the year before. The mining output was boosted by higher phosphate production.
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