Rwanda’s GDP decreases by 3.6 percent in third quarter

On 16 December 2020 at 07:03

The National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR) has announced that Rwanda’s GDP in the third quarter of 2020 grew at Rwf 2482 billion from Rwf 2359 of the same period in the previous year.

The third quarter looks promising for economic recovery compared to the second quarter which recorded 12.4% decrease compared to the same period last year.

The decrease is mostly attributed to difficult times of COVID-19 pandemic which affected the world in all aspects of life.

NISR revealed that the pandemic did not only bring health risks but also destabilized the economy due to instituted preventive measures.

Transport, trade, education, construction, export, hotels, restaurants and agriculture are among other sectors heavily affected by the pandemic.

The statement signed by NISR Director General released yesterday shows that COVID-19 effects on the economy are lessening compared to the second quarter.

In the third quarter of 2020, GDP decreased by 3.6% which isan improvement considering the sharp decline of 12.4% in second quarter.

“Services continue to lead in terms of shares to GDP with 48% compared to 26% and 19% shares for agriculture and industry respectively. The remainder 8% is attributed to net taxes on products. In this quarter, estimates calculated in 2017 prices show that GDP decreased 3.6 percent compared to the same quarter of 2019. This reflects the ongoing public health catastrophe of covid19,” reads in part the statement released by NISR.

Agriculture increased by 2% and contributed 0.5 percentage points to overall GDP. Within agriculture, food crops production increased by 3%. Export crops decreased by 8% mainly due to 21% drop in tea production and 6% drop in coffee production.

Among others, Industry dropped by 1% and contributed -0.3 percentage points to the GDP drop. The main contributor to the drop in the industry sector was Construction activities which dropped by 6% and Mining and quarrying which dropped by 24%. However, Manufacturing activities increased by 6%. Within Manufacturing, Food processing increased by 8%, Metal products increased by 31%, Furniture increased by 14% while Non-metallic products increased by 6%.

Overall services sector decreased by 7%. Within services, Transport activities decreased by 33%, Hotel and restaurants decreased by 55%, financial services decreased by 3%, Administrative and support activities decreased by 9%. Education decreased by 57% as schools remained closed between July and September 2020.

“However, Health services increased by 6%, Public Administration increased by 1% while information and communication activities increased by 43% mainly boosted by telecommunication activities,” reads NISR statement.

In Q3 of 2020, total final consumption expenditure decreased by 1 percent, Household final consumption decreased by 3%. However, Government final expenditures increased by 6%. Exports increased by 6% while Gross capital formation decreased by 14%.