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Kenyan GDP growth at 6% in third quarter 2018

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NAIROBI (Reuters): Kenya’s economy expanded faster in the third quarter of this year than in the same period last year due to strong performance in the agriculture and construction sectors, the statistics office said on Monday. 

The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics said the economy grew 6% in the third quarter of 2018, compared with 4.7% in the same period in 2017. 

It said the agriculture sector expanded by 5.2% compared with 3.7% in the third quarter of 2017, helped by better weather. 

“Prices of key food crops remained low during the quarter compared to the corresponding quarter of 2017, an indication of relative stability in supply,” KNBS said. 

Manufacturing grew by 3.2% from a 0.1% contraction in the third quarter of 2017, KNBS said. 

It said that the electricity and water supply sector grew by 8.5% from 4.5% in the third quarter of 2017, mainly due to a big increase in the generation of electricity from hydro and geothermal sources. 

Gross foreign reserves increased to 1,222.5 billion from 1,085.6 billion in the same period of last year. 

The current account deficit narrowed by 23% to 116 billion Kenyan shillings ($1.14 billion), it said. 

This was mainly due to lower imports of food and higher value of exports of goods and services. 

The Government forecasts that the economy will expand by 6.2% in 2019, up from a forecast 6.0% this year.

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