How reliable are our GDP numbers?

From Zambian Economist Wed Dec 5 2012, 15:21:00

One of the questions we get often relates to Zambia's GDP. Recently someone asked : are the GDP growth figures a true reflection of Zambia's economic performance?

The simple answer is no because GDP has several limitations for a country such as ours.

First, GDP measures the value of output produced in Zambia. But only that which is officially recorded. It does not capture our large informal sector (believed to be around 40% - 60% of gross national income), where the bulk of transactions are not recorded. So countries which record transactions better will have higher GDP than Zambia but that does not mean our true national output is smaller.

Secondly, GDP does not take into account negative externalities. So if you produce more copper and you cause sickness to people around Kankoyo, they say GDP has increased. But that is only because we are not producing the 'right amount' of copper in a safe and humane way. The true cost of producing copper is not being included.

[view whole blog post ]
 See More    |     Report Abuse


You might also be interested in the following news stories:

South Africa:   57 Kids Trafficked From Malawi (news)
Nyasa Times
27 July 2016

Fifty-seven Malawian children between the ages of 11 and 21 have been rescued from three suspected human traffickers in South Africa. Three Malawian nationals who were transporting the children have ... [read more]

Congo-Kinshasa:   Singer Koffi Olomide Sent to Jail for One Year Over Assault (news)
Rwanda Focus
26 July 2016

Congolese General Prosecution has charged Rhumba Maestro Koffi Olomide to serve one year in jail having been found guilty of assaulting one of his female dancers in Kenya. The 60-year old singer, ... [read more]

Burundi:   Gang Rapes by Ruling Party Youth (analysis)
Human Rights Watch
27 July 2016

Members of Burundi ruling party's youth league, the Imbonerakure, have repeatedly gang-raped women since a wave of political protests began in 2015. Many of the rapes appear to have been aimed at ... [read more]



blogAfrica is allAfrica.com's platform to help you keep an ear on the African blogosphere. We draw diverse voices from around the world who post regularly and insightfully about African issues. Bloggers, submit your blog's rss-feed!