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Congo, Democratic Republic of the Economy Profile 2018

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Economy - overviewThe economy of the Democratic Republic of the Congo - a nation endowed with vast natural resource wealth - continues to struggle. Systemic corruption since independence in 1960, combined with countrywide instability and conflict that began in the early-90s, has dramatically reduced national output and government revenue and increased external debt. With the installation of a transitional government in 2003 after peace accords, economic conditions slowly began to improve as the transitional government reopened relations with international financial institutions and international donors, and President KABILA began implementing reforms.

Renewed activity in the mining sector, the source of most export income, boosted Kinshasa's fiscal position and GDP growth, but low commodity prices are leading to slower growth, rising inflation, and a growing fiscal deficit. An uncertain legal framework, corruption, and a lack of transparency in government policy are long-term problems for the large mining sector and for the economy as a whole.

Much economic activity still occurs in the informal sector and is not reflected in GDP data. The DRC signed a Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility with the IMF in 2009 and received $12 billion in multilateral and bilateral debt relief in 2010; but, at the end of 2012, the IMF suspended the last three payments under the loan facility - worth $240 million - because of concerns about the lack of transparency in mining contracts. In 2012, the DRC updated its business laws by adhering to OHADA, the Organization for the Harmonization of Business Law in Africa. The price of copper – the DRC’s primary export - plummeted in 2015 and remained at record lows during 2016-17, reducing government revenues, expenditures, and foreign exchange reserves.
GDP (purchasing power parity)$67.99 billion (2017 est.)
$66.15 billion (2016 est.)
$64.6 billion (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
GDP (official exchange rate)$40.42 billion (2016 est.)
GDP - real growth rate2.8% (2017 est.)
2.4% (2016 est.)
6.9% (2015 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$800 (2017 est.)
$800 (2016 est.)
$800 (2015 est.)
note: data are in 2017 dollars
Gross national saving7.9% of GDP (2017 est.)
8.4% of GDP (2016 est.)
16.3% of GDP (2015 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 76.4%
government consumption: 11.8%
investment in fixed capital: 13.8%
investment in inventories: 0%
exports of goods and services: 30.5%
imports of goods and services: -32.5% (2017 est.)
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 21.1%
industry: 33%
services: 45.9% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line63% (2012 est.)
Labor force31.36 million (2017 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: NA%
industry: NA%
services: NA%
Unemployment rateNA%
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 2.3%
highest 10%: 34.7% (2006)
Budgetrevenues: $3.238 billion
expenditures: $3.366 billion (2017 est.)
Taxes and other revenues8% of GDP (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)-0.3% of GDP (2017 est.)
Public debt14.6% of GDP (2017 est.)
17.6% of GDP (2016 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)41.7% (2017 est.)
18.2% (2016 est.)
Central bank discount rate4% (31 December 2012)
20% (31 December 2011)
Commercial bank prime lending rate35.9% (31 December 2017 est.)
18.76% (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of narrow money$1.386 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$1.192 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of broad money$3.863 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$4.272 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Stock of domestic credit$3.492 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$3.523 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Market value of publicly traded shares$NA
Agriculture - productscoffee, sugar, palm oil, rubber, tea, cotton, cocoa, quinine, cassava (manioc, tapioca), bananas, plantains, peanuts, root crops, corn, fruits; wood products
Industriesmining (copper, cobalt, gold, diamonds, coltan, zinc, tin, tungsten), mineral processing, consumer products (textiles, plastics, footwear, cigarettes), metal products, processed foods and beverages, timber, cement, commercial ship repair
Industrial production growth rate1.6% (2017 est.)
Current Account Balance-$1.849 billion (2017 est.)
-$1.334 billion (2016 est.)
Exports$8.598 billion (2017 est.)
$8.228 billion (2016 est.)
Exports - commoditiesdiamonds, copper, gold, cobalt, wood products, crude oil, coffee
Exports - partnersChina 35.3%, Zambia 15.8%, South Korea 8.7%, Saudi Arabia 8%, Belgium 5.2% (2016)
Imports$8.845 billion (2017 est.)
$8.671 billion (2016 est.)
Imports - commoditiesfoodstuffs, mining and other machinery, transport equipment, fuels
Imports - partnersChina 20.2%, South Africa 15.7%, Zambia 8.6%, Belgium 7.6%, Tanzania 5.8%, France 5.2%, India 4.6%, Kenya 4.2% (2016)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$444.6 million (31 December 2017 est.)
$708.2 million (31 December 2016 est.)
Debt - external$5.324 billion (31 December 2017 est.)
$5.35 billion (31 December 2016 est.)
Exchange ratesCongolese francs (CDF) per US dollar -
1,546.8 (2017 est.)
1,010.3 (2016 est.)
1,010.3 (2015 est.)
925.99 (2014 est.)
925.23 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar year

Source: CIA World Factbook
This page was last updated on January 20, 2018