Angola: Government says Angola close to macroeconomic convergence

2 December 2008

Gaberone, Botswana, 2 Dec – Angola is very close to macroeconomic convergence with a view to the Economic and Monetary Union of the member countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), according to a statement issued by the Angolan embassy in Botswana.

According to the embassy statement, cited by Angolan news agency Angop, Angola has achieved 95 percent of the SADC primary targets for 2008, and now needs only to meet the target for one-digit inflation, which places it amongst the top three countries in the race for macroeconomic convergence.

The conclusion was drawn at the meeting held on 26 and 27 November, at the SADC headquarters in Gaberone, Botswana, the aim of which was to move ahead on economic convergence, which was attended by experts from Angola and remaining SADC member nations.

One of the primary targets set out by the SADC for 2008 is for member countries to post a fiscal deficit of less than 5 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), with Angola having a projection for this indicator of a surplus of 15 percent for the period.

Other indicators outlined in the primary targets are Public Debt (the value of which must be less than 60 percent of GDP) and the Current Account Deficit (which must be lower than 9 percent of GDP).

For these two indicators Angola posted a figure of less than 25 percent for the former, whilst the latter indicator was around 15 percent.

Other indicators that show macroeconomic performance in terms of convergence, but which are included in the SADC’s list of secondary targets, are GDP growth and Foreign Reserves and the Central bank’s level of credit to the government.

Angola presented a GDP growth forecast for 2008 of around 15 percent, as compared to the 7 percent required by the organisation’s convergence programme. The SADC was set up in 2008 and currently has Angola, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe as its members.

In terms of foreign reserves the value of which must represent a minimum of three months of imports, Angola expects them to total US$18 billion in 2008, which is six times more than the required level, considering that the country spends approximately US$1.2 billion on imports each month. (macauhub)