1 Apr 2005

Westpac warns of gloomy economic times for Fiji

8:30 am on 1 April 2005

The Westpac Bank has warned that Fiji faces a tough year ahead with low economic growth and inflationary pressures from a higher oil price.

Westpac treasurer Robert Barnes says a period of stagflation should be expected.

This is a combination of stagnant economic growth and high inflation.

Mr Barnes says Fiji's economy was already dented by higher oil prices last year and the pattern is set to be repeated, resulting in a decline in consumer spending.

The Reserve Bank of Fiji has already said that this year's inflation rate will be revised upwards from 3.8 per cent to 4.5 per cent if the authorities grant increases in bus and tax fares which are under consideration.