The Guyanese economy remains on track for a 25.1 percent growth rate for 2023 as the oil, agriculture and construction industries continue to deliver creditable performances. A recent report from Central Bank noted that for first quarter of 2023, oil sector production contributed greatly to the growth of the overall economy while the non-oil economy experienced moderate growth, specifically in the sectors of agriculture, manufacturing and construction as well as services.
In the agriculture and forestry sectors, Central Bank said rice production achieved a 36.5 percent increase to 110,932 metric tons, when compared to the same period in the year prior. The bank said this resulted from favourable weather conditions, which allowed for an increase in yield. Similarly, the bank said sugar production increased by 14.7 percent to 10,003 metric tons, when compared to the same period, one year earlier. It said this performance was as a result of favourable weather conditions, which provided for better quality cane and for easier harvesting.
With respect to forestry activities, the bank said it contracted by 16.3 percent mainly on account of decreased output of total logs by 19.7 percent.
As for the mining and quarrying sector, the bank said sand and stone contracted.
Turning to oil production, Central Bank said this totalled 34 million barrels at end-March 2023, a significant increase from end-March 2022 total of 10.9 million barrels. Similarly, declaration of crushed stone and sand increased by 63.3 percent and 50.6 percent respectively, as construction activities throughout the country kept demand high.
Furthermore, total bauxite production declined by 17.8 percent, when compared to one year earlier. Central Bank said this was mainly on account of lower production of Refractory Aggregate Super Calcined (RASC) bauxite by 30.1 percent.
Similarly, gold declarations were lower by 5.3 percent, as local and licensed dealers declarations contracted by 23.9 percent. The declarations from Aurora Gold Mine Inc. (AGM), Zijin Mining’s subsidiary in Guyana, the sole operating foreign company, increased by 65.4 percent, when compared to the same period one year prior.
In the manufacturing sector, Central Bank’s report said this registered increased production of biscuits by 57.5 percent, stock feed by 38.7 percent, paints by 30.6 percent, industrial flour by 20.1 percent and total aerated drinks by 4.1 percent. In contrast, there were declines in production of total pharmaceutical liquids by 45.6 percent, gas nitrogen by 17.9 percent, oxygen by 10.9 percent, alcoholic beverages by 5.2 percent and putty by 3.8 percent.
Overall, the Guyanese economy is projected to record real growth in Gross Domestic Product totalling 25.1 percent, while the non-oil economy is estimated to grow by 7.9 percent.