The points below summarize the information that has become available since the issuance of the staff report (SM/11/341). It does not change the thrust of the staff appraisal.
Consumer price inflation accelerated to 7.8 percent year-on-year in December 2011, compared to 6.5 percent the previous month. This acceleration reflected a large increase in food and fuel prices.
The government drew down E 283 million (1 percent of GDP) from the Reserves Replenishment Account at the Central Bank of Swaziland in December 2011 in order to pay civil servants’ salaries. This reduced gross official reserves of the Central Bank of Swaziland to E 4 billion at end-December 2011, equivalent to 2.2 months of import cover.
As expected, the government received the quarterly revenue (E 720 million) from the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) in the first week of January 2012. It eased somewhat the government cash situation and helped temporarily replenish the reserves at the central bank.
The authorities announced the appointment of the chief executive officer of the new supervisory agency for non-bank financial institutions in December 2011.