Industrial output rises by 4.2% in Mauritius in 2013
The index of industrial production rose 13.6% for the fourth quarter of 2013 compared to the previous quarter, and by 4.3% compared to the corresponding quarter of 2012. (Image: Investors Business Guide)
Mauritius is slowly but steadily bolstering its real economy, with a 4.2% rise in industrial production in 2013.
According to data released by Statistics Mauritius, the real industrial output grew by 4.2% in 2013 compared to 2012.
Also, the year ended on a good note, with the index of industrial production rising 13.6% for the fourth quarter of 2013 compared to the previous quarter, and by 4.3% compared to the corresponding quarter of 2012.
The growth is explained by expansions in the real output of “Manufacturing” (+4.6%), “Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply” (+4.4%) and “Water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities” (+2.5%), partly offset by a contraction of 4.6% in the output of “Mining and quarrying”.
Furthermore, the Producer Price Index – Manufacturing (PPI-M) released by Statistics Mauritius, showed a slight increase in the rate of inflation during the fourth quarter of 2013. It may be noted that a Producer Price Index (PPI) measures the average changes in prices received by domestic producers for their output.
On a monthly basis, the inflation rate remain unchanged in October, while it gained 1.2 points (+0.9%) in November and registered a loss of 0.5 point (-0.3%) in December 2013.
It may be further noted that while the PPI-M is one of several price indices used to measure inflation, its importance is being undermined by the steady decline in manufactured goods as a share of spending.
Overall, the PPI-M registered an increase of 0.7 point (+0.5%) over the fourth quarter to reach 134.4 in December 2013, after having stood at 133.7 in September 2013.
This increase can be explained mainly due to a rise in the producer prices of the following: wearing apparel (+5.9%); leather and related products (+4.5%); Machinery and equipment (+4.3%); and food products and beverages (+3.9%).
Turning to price competitiveness of exports and spending on imports, the price of both exports and imports came down in the fourth quarter of 2013. Thus, even as goods sold by Mauritius overseas saw a fall in prices, the goods purchased from overseas also became cheaper for the island economy.
The Export Price Index for the fourth quarter of 2013 stood at 106.0, representing a decline of 3.7% and 1.3% over the third quarter of 2013 and the fourth quarter of 2012 respectively.
The fall of 3.7% was mainly due to lower prices of “Food and live animals” (-9.5%) and “Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material” (-1.4%).
A decrease was also registered in the Import Price Index, which worked out to 120.7, representing a decline of 3.4% and 4.9% over the third quarter of 2013 and the fourth quarter of 2012 respectively.
This 3.4% decrease compared to the previous quarter was mainly the effect of decreases in the prices of “Food and live animals” (-8.3%), “Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials” (-3.3%) and “Machinery and transport equipment” (-2.6%).
However, overall terms of trade deteriorated for the island economy, with the terms of trade index down by 0.3 points from 88.1 during the third quarter of 2013 to 87.8 in the fourth quarter of 2013. This corresponded with a higher dip in export price index by 3.7% and a lower decline in import price index by 3.4%.
Compared to the corresponding period of 2012, however, the terms of trade improved by 3.3 points, from 84.5 to 87.8. This was in line with the lower decline in export price index by 1.3% and a higher decline in import price index by 4.9%.