According to the latest Business Expectations Survey conducted by the Bank of Botswana, optimism amongst businesses strengthened from a confidence level of 43% in last year’s second half to 48% for the current survey period, and is expected to rise further in the survey horizon for both domestic market-oriented firms and exporters.
The reason for this drastically more optimistic outlook is the economy, which grew by 4.3% in 2016 up from a negative of 1.7% in 2015. In line with previous trends, the BoB survey shows that more firms expect better business conditions going forward, with an overall confidence level of 55% for the second half of 2017 and 67% for the twelve-month period to June 2018.
Similarly, the confidence level of export-oriented businesses increased from 42% in the second half of last year to 50% in the first half of this year and it is anticipated to remain the same in second half of this year, before recovering markedly to 75% in the second half of this year to the first half of 2018.
Thus, the overall expected upswing in business confidence for 2017 and the first half of 2018 is due to a more positive outlook by both export and domestic-oriented businesses.