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Liberia's 2016 GDP growth projected to recover - IMF

Liberia's 2016 GDP growth projected to recover - IMF

Liberia

Liberia’s economy is projected to grow by 2.5 percent in 2016 – compared to 0.3 per cent last year – buoyed by higher gold production and a rebound in services and construction sectors, the International Monetary Fund has said.

In a “statement” released at the end of a visit by a mission to Liberia, which was battered by a three-year Ebola outbreak, the IMF said that economic growth was projected to stabilise at around 6 percent over the medium term.

This is however lower than the 8 percent projected before, reflecting the scaling-back of investment and production plans in the mining sector. Inflation is expected to remain at around 7 percent, the IMF said.

A significant number of non-performing loans have also hampered the banking sector.

“The modest pace of the post-Ebola recovery is affecting the banking sector, which continues to be weighed down by a large volume of non-performing loans,” the IMF said in its statement.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said in September it would take two years for Liberia’s economy to recover from an Ebola epidemic that killed more than 4,800 people in the country and hurt the agricultural and mining sectors.

The West African nation was declared free of the Ebola virus by global health experts in January but suffered a new Ebola death last month.

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