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Mauritius' central bank left its Key Repo Rate (KRR) unchanged at 3.35 percent but lowered its growth forecast for this year, saying economic developments since August "have been less favorable than expected and downside risks to the growth outlook have increased."


The Bank of Mauritius (BOM), which cut its rate by 15 basis points in August in a pre-emptive move against the risks of weaker global growth, lowered its growth forecast for 2019 to 3.7 percent from an earlier 3.9 percent but maintained the forecast for 2020 growth of around 4.0 percent.

Mauritius' gross domestic product grew an annual 3.4 percent in the second quarter of this year, up from 3.3 percent in the first quarter but BOM said the risks to the global economic outlook continue to tilt to the downside.


Inflation in Mauritius remains low, with headline inflation falling to 0.7 percent in October from 0.0 percent in July, according to BOM.


Bank staff maintained their forecast for inflation to average 0.5 percent this year and 1.5 percent in 2020.


Today's decision was decided by a majority as in August when the monetary policy committee also was split in its decision. Today's minutes of the meeting will be released Dec. 11.


At the August meeting 6 members voted for the cut, one member voted for a 25-basis-point cut and one voted to keep the rate unchanged.


The Mauritian rupee has been depreciating since February and was trading at 36.6 to the U.S. dollar today, down 6 percent this year.

 

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