Jul 14, 2016 News
…but other revenue earners experience decline
As the Ministry of Finance gears to finish the Half Year Report, statistics thus far indicate that the economy is performing creditably.
According to Finance Minister, Winston Jordan, economic growth is being spurred by the mining and construction sectors with spill off effects into the services sector.
He said that the main driver of economic growth in the mining sector is gold, with production for small and medium size miners as well as Guyana Gold Fields and Troy Resources continuing to increase.
The Finance Minister said that gold production for April totaled 60,558.8 ounces compared to 36,629.1 ounces achieved in April, last year.
The economist said that this brings gold production to 222,500 ounces for January to April, 2016, representing an increase of 104.8 percent over the production achieved during the same period last year.
He said that the primary reason for this is increased production by small and medium size miners as well as the two expatriate companies.
The Finance Minister also spoke on the performance of some of the nation’s other revenue earners.
With regard to sugar production for April, Jordan said that this was recorded at 16,873 tonnes compared to 26,826 tonnes during April 2015. He said that production for January to April, last totaled 55,687 tonnes compared to 67,555 tonnes achieved during the same period in 2015. This represents a reduction of 17.6 percent.
The Finance Minister said that the fall in production for the first crop resulted principally from the El Nino phenomenon which reduced the sucrose content of the sugar cane. In spite of this setback, Jordan said that GuySuCo is still projecting to meet its overall target of 242,287 tonnes.
Taking his attention to rice production for April, the economist said that this reached 148,615 tonnes, a decline of 30.2 percent when compared to the production achieved in April 2015.
The Finance Minister said that this brings rice production from January to April, 2016 to 205,208 tonnes compared to 303,314 tonnes produced during the same period in 2015. He said that the fall in production for the first crop in 2016 was attributed to the El Nino phenomenon combined with continued uncertainty about new markets. Jordan said that the large shortfall in the first crop is expected to be recouped in the second crop in order to reach the production target for 2016 of 630,028 tonnes.
Forestry production was also another area which showed a decline. Jordan said that for April, production amounted to 27,253.4 cubic metres compared to 37,548 cubic metres for the same period last year.
He said that lower production levels in 2016 continue to result from restrictions on the export of timber as the government aims to promote more value added products within the sector.
Jordan said that total production from January to April this year currently stands at 106,639.3 cubic metres compared to 135,935.2 cubic metres produced during the same period in 2015.
Speaking to bauxite production for April, last, the Finance Minister said that this was 135,431 tonnes compared to 151,838 in April, 2015. This brings bauxite production from January to April this year to 580,366 tonnes compared to 529,100 tonnes during the same period in 2015.
Jordan said that increased production for 2016 is mainly attributed to improved efficiency and productivity within the industry despite low prices.
He said that the bauxite industry has also surpassed expectations in 2016, changing the outlook for this industry from zero growth towards a positive growth rate.
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