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Kenya

Construction Sector Defies Pandemic to Record Growth in 3Q20 – KNBS

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 28 – Kenya’s construction sector recorded a 16.2 percent growth in the third quarter of 2020, compared to 6.6 percent growth in the corresponding quarter of 2019, defying the impact of the coronavirus pandemic which ravaged sectors across the economy.

This is according to a report by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics which says the growth was evidenced in the volume of cement consumed.

According to the report, cement consumption increased by 23.5 percent from 1,553.8 thousand metric tonnes in the third quarter of 2019 to 1,925.2 thousand metric tonnes in the review period.

It also notes that import values of construction-related materials such as timber, wood products, bitumen, lime, cement, plumbing materials and glass products increased during the period.

On the same note, credit advanced to this sector grew by 4.9 percent.

Other sectors that witnessed growth during the period include the electricity and water supply and transport and storage.

During the period under review, the electricity and water supply sector expanded by 4.7 percent in the period compared to 6.4 percent growth in the third quarter of 2019.

The total volume of electricity produced increased marginally by 0.8 percent in the third quarter of 2020 compared to 2.1 percent growth in the third quarter of 2019.

Meanwhile, the transportation and storage sector grew by 2.9 percent in the review period compared to 7.6 percent growth in the third quarter of 2019.

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The sector’s performance was curtailed by contractions in activities of air transport and Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) passenger transport which had not picked despite easing of COVID-19 containment measures.

The SGR passenger transport contracted by 77.5 percent while the number of visitors’ arrivals through the two major international airports contracted by 92.4 percent.

“However, the sector was buoyed by an increase in Port throughput from 8,325 thousand metric tonnes in the third quarter of 2019 to 8,6550 thousand metric tonnes in the review period,” the report says.

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