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Suriname posted GDP growth of 4.4% in 2013.
Activity was driven by investment in a number of mining projects and increased government
spending on infrastructure and housing, but sluggish demand in North America
and the EU, its main trading partners, and in neighbouring countries were drags
on growth. We forecast growth of just under 4% this year, supported by higher
state spending on subsidies and public sector wages ahead of presidential
elections in May 2015. The mining sector - in particular oil, gold and bauxite - remains pivotal
for the whole economy, accounting for 90% of exports and over 30% of government
development of the Merian gold mine by Newmont Mining Corporation, involving
some US$1bn of investment, and another project could lead to a doubling of gold
output by end-2016 (and there are also hopes of offshore oil finds). However, commodity prices have been trending lower in the last few
years, dampening revenues and may
start to undermine the prospects
for investment. The outlook for both gold
and oil prices now appears quite subdued.
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