The Caribbean Development Bank’s (CDB) Vice President of Operations, Isaac Solomon says regional growth of 5.7 percent is forecast for 2023. For last year, growth was 3.5 percent.
Solomon said this forecast is based on the continued revival of tourism arrivals and investments in the energy sector. The CDB official said the performance is, however, subject to some risks associated with advanced economies which are on track to register lower growth relative to 2022.
“Looking ahead,” he added “for 2023 we project that, despite facing multiple challenges, Borrowing Member Countries’ (BMCs) economic performance will continue to improve over the medium-term. While cautiously optimistic about the near-term outlook and recognising the uncertainty regarding the war in Ukraine, it is difficult to estimate growth with a large degree of certainty.”
Examining the economic performance of the bank’s BMCs in 2022 at the CDB’s Annual News Conference on January 18, in Barbados, Solomon indicated that increased economic activity spurred strong regional economic growth that averaged 10.3 percent.
Solomon said this is largely because of increased energy production in Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago, higher international oil prices in commodity-exporting countries and economic growth of 4.6 percent in tourism-dependent countries. This performance, he stated, helped buoy increased government revenues and improved fiscal positions.
According to the bank executive, the challenges associated with past economic performance and global conditions place the region at a critical juncture, adding that the impact of protracted shocks compounded the region’s socio-economic difficulties.