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Economic growth exceeds expectations 13 July 2005

    A HIGHER than expected economic growth rate is revealed in the latest National Income figures for the Isle of Man released by the Treasury today (Friday, July 8, 2005).

    The Island’s economy expanded by 6.3% in real terms (after inflation) in the year to March 31st 2004, compared with an expected growth of just 4%. The performance raised the total value of goods and services produced to £1.34 billion and increased the Island’s lead over the UK in terms of national income per head by 4% to a ratio of 106%.

    In particular there was rapid development of new sectors, notably the Information and Communication Technology sector (which incorporates e-business), and manufacturing, both up by over 12% in real terms, whilst the tourism industry has continued its strong recovery from the UK foot and mouth outbreak of 2001.

    Commenting on the figures, Treasury Minister Allan Bell MHK said:

    “Real growth of more than 6% is very healthy, particularly when viewed alongside typical rates of growth in Europe of below 3%. Despite relatively difficult trading conditions the economy clearly performed exceedingly well over the year and all indications are that similar growth has continued since. It is particularly pleasing to see increasing contributions being made by our high tech, modern industries in manufacturing and in e-business."
    “In many respects conditions have not eased significantly since the period to which the report relates but the general indicators have remained strong and we have had further growth over the last twelve months."
    “To me this indicates that there is a solid base to the economy and that our companies are showing themselves to be adaptable and fleet-footed in adapting to market changes. But it also reflects our successes in attracting new inward investment, in no small part a tribute to our taxation strategy and to the efforts of our marketing teams."
    “We can be assured that the years ahead will continue to see changes in the market place, ongoing external pressures and forever increasing competition for our export earners."
    “But these figures show that with our strong partnership between Government and business we can meet these challenges and continue to deliver economic growth and ever improving living standards for the people of the Island.”

    Copies of the report “Isle of Man National Income 2003/04” are available free of charge from the Economic Affairs Division, Illiam Dhone House, 2 Circular Road, Douglas, Isle of Man, IM1 1PQ. Telephone 01624 685743 or the Tynwald Library. Further information can be obtained from Stephen Carse, Economic Adviser.

    The report is also posted on the Government website at www.gov.im/treasury

    13th July 2005

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