EM supply constraints mount

Although the emerging market manufacturing PMI ticked up last month, EM industry has been undergoing a slowdown for some time. And the surveys show that supply constraints are mounting, which is likely to weigh on manufacturers’ output in the months ahead.
William Jackson Chief Emerging Markets Economist
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Emerging Markets Economics Update

Disruptions no longer worsening, but Omicron a threat

November’s PMIs offered tentative signs that the worst of the supply disruption may have passed, but the bigger picture is that manufacturers in the emerging world remain stretched. And while it’s still too early to tell, the Omicron variant could exacerbate existing strains. The upshot is that supply constraints are likely to continue to weigh on industry for some time yet.

1 December 2021

Emerging Markets Trade Monitor

The impact of Omicron on EM trade

If the new Omicron variant leads to tighter containment measures across the world, that would probably prop up demand for pandemic-related goods to the benefit of Asian exporters. Meanwhile, oil producers are likely to see external positions deteriorate if the plunge in prices is sustained. But arguably the most clear point for now is that the new variant will lead to renewed slumps in tourism, adding to balance of payments risks in the likes of Tunisia and Sri Lanka.

30 November 2021

Emerging Markets Economics Update

The Omicron variant and the threat to EMs

There’s a lot that we don’t know about the new Omicron variant. But if it proves more virulent, the economic fallout would probably be largest in EMs in parts of Africa and South and South East Asia that have lower vaccination rates, more limited fiscal space and/or larger tourism sectors. The new variant may also temper the pace of tightening cycles in parts of the emerging world. In view of the wider interest, we are also sending this Emerging Markets Economics Update to clients of all our Emerging Markets services.

29 November 2021

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Debt restructuring talks inching forward

The threat of messy outcomes to Sub-Saharan Africa’s debt problems seems to have diminished recently. In Zambia, the new administration vowed to tackle debt problems and press on with restructuring talks under the G20’s Common Framework. And Ethiopia, another participant in the programme, held its first creditor meeting as a political crisis reignited debt concerns. Even so, debt restructuring negotiations will not be smooth sailing, especially following recent revelations that Zambia’s debt owed to China may be substantially larger than officially reported. And elsewhere, debt problems may come back to bite down the line. While immediate risks in South Africa and Ghana are low, policymakers will need to undertake large fiscal consolidation to stabilise public debt-to-GDP ratios.

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Re-opening boost fades as supply disruptions mount

Economies across Emerging Europe enjoyed a rapid rebound in Q2, but all the signs suggest that the recovery has come off the boil in Q3. Surveys of sentiment in services sectors have started to flatline and, in some cases, fall. What’s more, hard activity data show that supply chain disruptions and raw materials shortages have taken a greater toll on industry. Manufacturing in Poland’s electronics sector has fallen sharply and auto sectors in Czechia and Hungary have been hit hard. We think economies will still post robust rises in GDP in Q3, but the risks lie to the downside and suggest that the regional recovery may return to a steadier pace of growth earlier than we had expected.

29 September 2021

Emerging Markets Trade Monitor

Headwinds facing metals exporters

It looks like EM exports rose further in August and, possibly, September too. And while we expect them to decline over the coming quarters, they will remain elevated. However, China’s property slowdown means that the risks to the export outlook for some metals producers are larger.

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