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Zimbabwe Lags African Peers In Growth, Says World Bank Report

A recently issued World Bank report placed Zimbabwe at the bottom of the ladder among African nations in terms of economic growth through 2005.

The Bank's Africa Development Indicators 2006 publication shows Zimbabwe was the only country on the African continent to post negative growth in 2004, the latest year for which preliminary, if not final, economic statistics were available. However, the Seychelles, an Indian Ocean island nation, posted minus 2% growth in 2004.

According to the World Bank data tables, Zimbabwe posted negative growth of 4.2% in 2004 following contraction of 10.4% in 2003, compared with average economic growth across Sub-Saharan Africa of 5.1% in 2004 and 4.1% in 2003.

Senior World Bank economist Jorges Arbache told reporter Ndimyake Mwakalyelye that Zimbabwe's longrunning negative growth would make it harder for the country to reach its Millennium Development Goal of halving poverty by 2010.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 For Zimbabwe...