2022 sees economic growth rise by 5.21% 

2022 sees economic growth rise by 5.21% 

The country’s economy with an estimated gross domestic product (GDP) size of Nu 227.813bn, recorded a growth of 5.21% in 2022, marking a 0.79% increase from the 4.42% growth in 2021, according to the National Statistics Bureau’s (NSB) National Accounts Statistics 2023 released on 1 September, 2023.

The increase in the economic growth rate is attributed to growth in hotels and restaurants with 31.58%, followed by construction with a growth of 16.45%, wholesale and retail trade with 14.35% growth, professional, administrative and support services with a growth of 13.99%, among other sectors.

However, the report states that agriculture (crops), mining and quarrying, and electricity sectors experienced a drop of -4.00%, -3.02%, and -1.14%, respectively.

Similarly, on the demand side of the economy, the final consumption expenditure revealed a growth of 3.10%. According to the report, the primary growth contributors were household final consumption expenditure, showing a growth of 5.55%, while the government final consumption experienced a decline of -2.32%.

The gross domestic capital formation also demonstrated robust growth, increasing by 28.84%, a notable improvement compared to the growth rate of 19.96% in 2021. However, there was a decline in the export of goods and services, dropping by -8.10%, while the import of goods and services increased significantly by 17.14% in 2022.

The report also show that the gross national income (GNI) registered a growth of 5.73% in 2022, an increase of 1.13% as compared to the 4.59% recorded in the preceding year revealing that the growth is a result of a rise in the inflow of primary income as compared to the previous year.

The inflow of the primary income in 2022 was recorded at Nu 2.602bn, an increase from the previous year’s figure of Nu 1.514bn and the primary income outflow for the same period to the rest of the world (RoW) was recorded at Nu 14.436bn, compared to Nu 13.090bn in the previous year.

For instance, in 2022, the economy recorded a gross national savings of Nu 53.73bn, which was an increase of Nu 4.8bn from Nu 48.881bn in 2021.

Within the total national savings, government savings stood at a deficit of Nu 7.051bn, while private savings including households, private and public corporations amounted to Nu 60.785bn. However, the report revealed that despite the rise in national savings during 2022, the domestic investment demand could not be covered from the national savings resulting in a saving-investment gap of Nu 70.836bn.

According to the report, the nominal investment for 2022 was estimated at Nu 127.071bn, which is significantly higher than the gross national saving of Nu 48.361bn recorded in 2020. In real terms, investment experienced a growth of 9.93% in 2022 as compared to 15.89% in 2021, a lower by 5.96%.

Meanwhile, the annual price change as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) which stood at 5.64% in 2022 as compared to the 2021 inflation which was 7.35%.  In 2022 inflation was lower by 1.71%.

Sherab Dorji from Thimphu