Angola’s kwanza gains second most amongst African currencies in last year, Standard Bank says

16 May 2006

Johannesburg, South Africa, 16 May – Angola’s kwanza, is the African currency to have gained the second most value over the last year, thanks to oil revenues and reduced inflation, said South Africa’s Standard Bank in its latest report on the country.

In the last 12 months, the Standard Report said, the kwanza has gained 9.8 percent in value against the dollar, and was surpassed only by Zambia’s kwacha, which increased by 35 percent in the same period, and projections point to a continuation of this trend.

“While oil export revenues remain strong, the National Bank of Angola will continue to intervene in the currency market to maintain the currency’s relative stability,” said the report written by Standard Bank analyst, Anita Last.

At the end of last week, the Angolan currency was worth US$0.0125, a record value on the international market.

The Angolan central bank, Standard Bank said, has been selling dollars and buying kwanzas in order to prevent price increases on imported products, mainly food goods, which account for 46 percent of the country’s “basket of goods” used to measure inflation.

For this year the authorities’ target is an inflation rate of 10 percent, 8.5 percentage points less than the rate achieved in 2005.

In 2004 average inflation stood at around 43 percent.

Angola’s economy expanded by 15.7 percent last year and this year should, according to the latest forecast from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), grow 26 percent, the highest growth rate on the African continent. (macauhub)