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Economy Grows 5.3% 8 December 2003

National Income figures for 2001/02 released by the Treasury show that the Island's economy held up well in the face of global downturn and business uncertainties to record real growth (before inflation) of 5.3%, on a par with that of the previous year. The Island's performance served to increase national income per head of population to around 107% of the figure for the UK.

And for once it was not the finance sector leading the way. Growth in the financial services industry was negatively affected by falling markets and the aftermath of September 11th.

But the absence of any expansion in this sector was more than compensated for by a growth in output from manufacturing (up by 26%) and increased construction activity. The foot and mouth outbreak was a feature of 2001/02 and its impact is reflected most obviously in a fall in visitor accommodation income.

Commenting on the figures, Treasury Minister Allan Bell said,

"To post such significant growth in what was a very difficult year on account of extraneous events shows the resilience and solidity of the Island's economic base. The performance of the manufacturing sector in increasing its output by over one-quarter by value is particularly pleasing and serves to answer concerns that the Isle of Man cannot sustain its diversified economic base.

"Since 2001/02 we believe that overall growth has slowed somewhat further but the economy is nevertheless holding up well and, despite what is likely to be only a slow recovery in global trading conditions, we are well positioned for stronger growth in the future. However nothing can be guaranteed in the competitive world in which the Isle of Man seeks to secure its economic future and it is incumbent upon Government and Island companies to continue to improve efficiency, determine new initiatives, and generally seek to maximise market opportunities."

Copies of the report 'Isle of Man National Income 2001/02' 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.

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