The agricultural sector expanded 7.1 percent, following a 5.6 percent gain in the second quarter due to improved weather conditions, despite lower external demand for horticultural products. The growth was supported by an increase in the production of most major crops along with higher production of tea, coffee and sugarcane. Exports of cut flowers and fruits increased during the quarter while shipments of fruits declined.
Among production sectors, construction grew sharlpy by 14.1 percent (+9.7 percent in Q2) mainly due to credit advanced to the sector and higher cement consumption. Electricity and water supply sector increased by 11 percent (+10.2 percent in Q2), as production of geothermal electricity posted the highest expansion of 40.4 percent followed by hydro-electric power generation which advanced by 12.7 percent.
Among services, financial and insurance activities expanded by 10.1 percent (+7.6 percent in Q2); wholesale and retail trade advanced 6.5 percent (+5.5 percent in Q2); and transport and storage grew 8.7 percent (+6.1 percent in Q2).
By contrast, accommodation and restaurants sector shrank for the seventh straight quarter by 2.3 percent (-0.8 percent in Q2).