Economic growth slows to 4.9pc in 2017

Economic growth slows to 4.9pc in 2017

Kenya’s economy grew by 4.9 percent last year from 5.9 percent in 2016, the national statistics office said on Wednesday.

The economy was hobbled by a severe drought in the first quarter that was followed by poor rainfall and a drawn out presidential election in the second half of the year that unnerved investors.

Zachary Mwangi said the services sectors, including tourism, had registered growth during the year helping to drive economic expansion despite political uncertainty and drought that hit the farming and manufacturing sectors.

“The growth was attributed to the services-oriented sectors,” said Mwangi, director general of Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, at the release of the annual economic survey.

Tourism, a key source of hard currency and jobs, grew 14.7 percent while earnings surged 20 percent, Mwangi said.

In contrast, growth in the agriculture sector, which accounts for close to a third of output, slid to just 1.6 percent from 5.1 percent in the prior year.

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