This September quarter has been recorded as the first quarter of positive economic growth since the discovery of Covid19 community cases within the country in March 2022.
This is according to the Samoa Bureau of Statistics.
Economic activity, as measured by Gross Domestic Product (GDP) increased by 4.7% in the September 2022 quarter, recording total GDP in real terms of $501.2 million.
GDP recorded positive growth after four consecutive quarters of negative growth in real terms; this follows growth rates of -10.1% and -8.0% in June and March 2022 respectively.
With the reopening of international borders in August, the quarter under review was impacted strongly, activating revival of the nation’s economy through travel, retailing and service-based activities to name a few.
The nation’s 60th Independence anniversary celebrated within a period of one year culminated in a variety of activities prepared by the Government which attracted many tourists and family overseas to visit during the period under review.
As a result, activity in the Services sector grew by 2.4% on a year-on-year basis in the September 2022 quarter.
Taxes and subsidies recorded for this period was the main contributor to total GDP growth; it went up by 23.5% with an increase of $16.1 million on a year-on-year basis. Excise tax which comprises of 51.2% of total tax increased by 16.6%.
General taxes on goods and services likewise increased by 22.9% with a share to total tax of 46.0%. Taxes on international trade and transactions have also recorded an increase of 61.7% compared to the same period of 2021.
Activities pertaining to religious services, repairs of communication devices, computers and household appliances also grew positively in the period under review.
Personal and other services was the second biggest contributor to the overall increase in growth recorded for September 2022 quarter; this industry has increased in three consecutive quarters.
Conversely, some of the industries that performed negatively in the September 2022 quarter included Financial services, Communication and Electricity and water with respective contributions of – 1.8pp, -1.8pp and -0.6pp respectively to overall growth.