Borrowing trends grow in Namibia amid economy recession

WINDHOEK, Nov. 2 (Xinhua) — A sharp increase in domestic appetite for debt to finance different styles of living as the economy continues a consecutive recession, statistics showed Thursday.

Total credit extended to the private sector in September rose by 7.3 percent year-on-year — the fastest pace on an annual basis since May 2017 — to 95.3 billion Namibian dollars (6.57 billion U.S. dollars), according to statistics released by the Bank of Namibia.

Credit extended to the business sector increased on an annual basis, compared with third quarter 2017, to 6.0 percent from 5.2 percent in August, while credit extended to individuals slowed down slightly from 7.0 percent in August to 6.9 percent, according to the country’s reserve bank.

Compared with the beginning of 2018, credit extended to businesses expanded faster (5.2 percent) than that extended to individuals (4.0 percent), said the bank.

“Individuals continue to absorb most of total credit extended (58.6 percent), while businesses absorbed 40.2 percent. The remaining 1.2 percent are extended to the non-resident private sector,” said the bank.

Namibian economy has been in recession for the last ten-quarters since the middle of 2016, which is attributed to such factors as commodity price crash, persistent droughts and weak growth in neighbouring trading partners, said Minister of Finance Calle Schlettwein in October.

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