By Nelson Bocanegra
BOGOTA, Aug 11 (Reuters) - Colombia's economic growth for the second quarter of 2022 is forecast at 11.25% versus the year-earlier period, according to the median taken from a Reuters poll published on Thursday.
The forecast follows robust domestic consumption, recovering employment levels and reactivation of its industry, according to responses from 14 analysts, whose estimates for economic growth in the three months ended June 30 taken ranged from 10.6% to 13.2% versus the second quarter of 2021.
"We've seen very positive figures for the retail sector, while industry has recorded significant growth, accompanied by a reactivation of tourism and better figures for the labor market," Carolina Monzon, the chief economist in Colombia at bank Banco Itau in Colombia, said.
The median estimate is close to the most recent forecast from Colombia's central bank, which raised its own outlook on economic growth to 11.5%, from a previous 10.1%.
The government's DANE statistics agency will publish the report on second-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) on Aug. 16.
As it moves into the second half of the year, analysts expect Latin America's fourth-largest economy to slow amid high interest rates, the result of measures used by the central bank to curb high inflation, which is also expected to effect consumption.
Analysts' median forecast pegs GDP growth this year at 6.6%, before slowing to 2.35% in 2023.
They also highlighted how Colombia's economy is expected to outperform the average for Latin America, which the International Monetary Fund expects to hit 3%.
"We expect growth of more than 6% this year for Colombia, which would make it one of the region's most dynamic economies in 2022," said David Cubides, director of economic research at the Alianza brokerage.
The central bank has hiked its benchmark interest rate by a total of 725 basis points to a current 9% since starting an upward monetary policy cycle last September - matching attitudes of central banks around the world - amid global inflationary pressures.
(Reporting by Nelson Bocanegra; Writing by Oliver Griffin; Editing by Marguerita Choy)
((Oliver.Griffin@thomsonreuters.com; +57 304-583-8931;))
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