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New calculation lifts Kenya's GDP by 25%

30 September 2014, 12:34 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - Kenya's gross domestic product (GDP) was 25 percent better in 2013, after the government changed the base calculation year to 2009 from 2001.

Overall output rose to KES 4.76 trillion in 2013 after re-basing, up from KES 3.8 trillion shillings, Secretary for Devolution and Planning, Anne Waiguru, said Tuesday in Nairobi.

Growth in 2013 was said to be at 5.7% after re-basing, up from the prior announced 4.7%.

"Following the re-basing, which is long overdue, the economy can be seen to be performing at its true level and will only rise", Waiguru said.

Read also: Why people remain poor

Revising the size of GDP does not change much in reality. Ability to repay loans does not change or improve, neither does the country's disposable income.

Waiguru though insisted that the shift will only bring positives to the country.

"The fact that our numbers have improved will in the long run affect the blueprint of the people of Kenya, she commented.

Kenya's move follows the re-basing earlier this year of Nigeria's economy. It changed the base year from 1990 to 2010 and, as a result, rose above South Africa to become the continent's biggest economy.

"It is a process that has been undertaken by other countries and Kenya should thus not be left behind", Waiguru added.

In the process, Kenya rises from the 12th to 9th biggest economy in Africa.

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