In December 2022, tourist arrivals increased significantly by 12.0% compared with the same period of last year, totaling 184,051 tourist arrivals for the month. During the month, the largest number of tourist arrivals were recorded from India, followed by Russia and United Kingdom.
The rate of inflation (annual percentage change in the national CPI) is at 2.8% in November 2022. From the major categories of the CPI, the largest contributors to the annual rate of inflation during the month were Fuels and lubricants for personal transport equipment (42.0 percentage points); Oils and fats (34.8 percentage points); Passenger transport by road (19.9 percentage points).
The volume of fish exports in December 2022 significantly increased by 45.0% compared with the same period of last year. This was mainly driven by an increase in Fresh, chilled or frozen tuna exports.
Real GDP growth
The real GDP growth is projected to decelerate to 7.6% in 2023, from an estimated 12.3% growth in 2022.
Annual broad money growth rate increased to 6% at the end of December 2022, after registering a growth of 5% in November 2022. This growth was primarily driven by an increase in quasi money, owing to a substantial increase in foreign currency transferable deposits as well as other deposits. Similarly, narrow money registered a modest growth solely due to a rise in transferable deposits.
Credit to private sector
The annual growth rate of credit to the private sector by commercial banks in December 2022 increased to 5% compared to the previous month. During the month, credit extended as personal loans observed largest growth, mainly reflecting the local currency lending for credit cards and consumer durables, followed by increase in lending to the tourism sector, commerce sector and real estate sector. However, credit offered to the transport sector declined during the review period.
Overnight deposit facility (average)
During December 2022, the average Overnight Deposit Facility (ODF) placement stood at MVR 6.5 billion. This marked a growth of 16% in annual terms, largely reflecting the increase in local currency liquidity due to monetization.
Official reserve assets
Official reserve assets increased to US$ 827.7 million at the end of December 2022 from US$ 604.2 million at the end of November 2022, recording a growth of 37%. Similarly, in annual terms, the official reserve assets registered a growth rate of 3% for December 2022.
Total exports (F.O.B) for December 2022 observed a growth of 35.3% compared to December 2021. This was mainly driven by re-exports (20.2 percentage points) and fish exports (15.9 percentage points).
Total imports (C.I.F) for December 2022 increased by 25.2% compared to December 2021. Imports of petroleum products observed a growth of 28.0% during this period.
Export of goods and service
Export of goods and services for 2023 is estimated to be increased by 5.4% compared to 2022. The growth is mainly driven by Export of services, which is expected to be at US$ 4.5 billion.
Balance on goods in percent of GDP
Balance on goods in percent of GDP is estimated to be at -46.2% in 2022, while it is expected to be at -43.3% in 2023.
Import of goods in percent of GDP
Import of goods in percent of GDP is estimated to be at 52.4% in 2022, while in 2023, it is expected to be at 48.9%.
Current account balance in percent of GDP
The current account balance in percent of GDP stood at -7.9% in 2021. Meanwhile it is expected to widen to -18.0% in 2022, driven by the changes in the balance on services and balance on goods. In 2023 current account balance in percent of GDP is estimated narrow down to -14.9%.
At the end of December 2022, US Dollar reference rate of MMA stood at 15.40 Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR) per US Dollar (US$).