Export led

Click on the globe for Key Economic Forecast & Indicators

Economic growth remained robust in the first half of 2004, boosted by domestic spending, and despite the ongoing drag from the foreign balance. Continued strong growth is expected in 2005 and 2006, with improving net exports offsetting the projected weakening in household consumption and residential investment.
This should be accompanied by further employment gains and inflation staying within the Reserve Bank’s 2%-3% target band, underpinned by moderate wage increases and solid productivity growth.The upbeat economic outlook should allow the removal of the remaining monetary stimulus, to safeguard price stability. The projected small fiscal surpluses over coming years are appropriate, leaving room for automatic stabilisers to operate if the global recovery weakens or another drought develops in rural areas.
Population (000s), 200319 881
Area (000 sq km)7 687
GDP (Billion USD), 2003518.7
Life expectancy at birth (Women, Men), 2002 82.6, 77.4
Total labour force (000s), 200310 016
Government typeIndependent Federal State, UK Monarch
Indicators% change unless otherwise indicated
GDP growth3.63.83.6
Household savings ratio-2.1-1.8-1.4
Consumer price index2.32.42.6
Short-term interest rate (%)
Unemployment rate (%)
General government financial balance (% GDP)
Current account balance (% GDP)-5.5-4.9-4.6
Source: OECD© OECD Observer No 245, November 2004

Economic data


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