The PMA Business Cycle Index (PMABCI) – April 2022
A notable Improvement in the West Bank and Gaza Strip
The results of the PMA Business Cycle Index (PMABCI) revealed a remarkable improvement in the overall index, from -0.4 in March to 11.8 point in April, after an increase in both West Bank and Gaza Strip. These developments are attributed to the religious occasions (Ramadan) and their impact on the recovery of markets and enhancing demand.
The overall index in West Bank increased from 5.8 point in March to 17.7 point in April. This improvement was led by the significant increase in the manufacturing index (from 2.5 to 6.1), followed by the rise in the trade index (from -4.1 to -1.0), and the construction index (from 1.2 to 4.3). In addition, the IT and communication index increased (from 0.3 to 1.1), and the renewable energy index (from 0.5 to 1.0). In the meanwhile, the agricultural index remained relatively stable at around 4.0 point, the transportation and storage index around 2.3 point, with a positive trend in both indices.
At the same time, the overall index in Gaza Strip increased from -32.6 point during March to -18.6 point in April, influenced by the rise in higher weight sub-indices. This improvement is headed by a significant increase in the trade index (from -15.4 to -3.3), followed by the increase in both the renewable energy index and manufacturing index, (from -1.6 to 1.1) and (from -5.8 to -3.2) respectively. In addition, transportation and storage index improved (from -1.5 to 0.0). On the contrary, agricultural index declined (from 0.0 to -3.6), and construction index fell (from -8.2 to -9.1). In the meantime, the IT and communication index stabilized at around -0.3 point.
In general, firms’ owners in both West Bank and Gaza Strip indicated a rise in production level accompanied by a lesser increase in sales level, which caused accumulation in inventory level. Furthermore, they expect that both employment and production levels would enhance during the near future, affected by the positive improvement in the economic activities.