2013-01-01 03:03:54 - Zambia Business Forecast Report Q4 2012 - a new country guide report on companiesandmarkets.com
Expansionary fiscal policy, robust investment and rising incomes are expected to help to maintain rapid economic growth in Zambia, and we expect that real GDP will expand by 7.0% or more through 2015. Although the first year of Michael Sata´s presidency has not been without controversy, we believe that Zambia will remain an attractive investment destination owing to its strong macroeconomic profile and improving business environment.
Major Forecast Changes
Informed by new data released by the IMF, along with mid-year projections that indicate that revenues are coming in at higher levels than previously expected, we have altered our 2012 budget deficit projections from 6.4% of GDP to 5.7%. Data from the Bank of Zambia have indicated that growth in the copper
sector has fallen short of our original expectations, and we have downgraded our current account surplus forecast to 1.2% of GDP in 2012 and 0.3% in 2013, compared with our previous projections of 1.4% and 1.6% respectively.
Key Risks To Outlook
The most salient risks to Zambia´s economy stem from global economic developments that directly impact the price of copper, Zambia´s chief export, as well as the appetite for frontier market investment. If struggles in Europe, China and other major markets are better or worse than we currently expect, then our forecasts would be rendered either too optimistic or too negative. We again stress that we believe that Sata understands the importance of maintaining good relationships with foreign businesses and other private sector stakeholders. However, if his policies take a populist turn, as some suspect they could, our projections for investment and growth would need to be revised.
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