Fish exports dominate produce sector

Namibia exported N$4,1 billion worth of fish products, up from N$3,2 billion recorded during the second quarter of 2022, but imported N$299,2 million worth of staple grain in the second quarter of 2023.

This was, however, lower than the N$471,3 million worth of grain imports registered in the corresponding quarter of 2022.

According to the Quarterly Agriculture Statistical Bulletin, issued by the Namibia Statistical Agency (NSA), the total agronomy production declined by 60,1% from 55 036 tonnes in the second quarter of 2022 to 21 953 tonnes in the second quarter of 2023.

This decrease was reflected in all controlled crops, with white maize, wheat, and millet recording 60,4%, 54,5%, and 11,9% declines, respectively in the period from April to June 2023.

According to the NSA bulletin, similar to the distribution of the second quarter of 2022, white maize dominated the production of controlled grains, recording 21 648 tonnes, followed by millet with 295 tonnes.

“Wheat recorded the lowest production of 10 tonnes,” said the NSA.

The total export of agronomy products for the second quarter of 2023 was valued at N$15 600, compared to N$119 300 in the corresponding quarter of 2022.

The exports for the quarter under review were solely white maize.

The NSA says the cereals import bill during the quarter under review was dominated by wheat at N$171,9 million, followed by maize N$121,2 million, and rice at N$3,3 million.

A total of 4 377 tonnes of controlled fresh produce was marketed during the second quarter of 2023, down from 5 055 tonnes in the parallel quarter of 2022.

Potatoes dominated local purchases recording 1 318 tonnes, followed by onions with 1 216 tonnes.

Tomatoes, butternuts and cabbage featured among the top five purchased produce, recording 467 tonnes, 446 tonnes, and 357 tonnes, respectively.

The NSA says in the second quarter of 2023, dates were the main export earnings of horticultural products at N$25,8 million, followed by tomatoes and vegetable seeds recording N$3,3 million and N$1,4 million, respectively.

Potato imports dominated the horticultural products, claiming a bill of N$17,2 million during the second quarter of 2023. Apples and onions followed in second and third place with bills of N$8,7 million and N$7 million, respectively.

The number of animals auctioned increased by 2,3% to 79 113, compared to 77 338 auctioned in the corresponding quarter of 2022.

Goats recorded a growth of 18,4% to 18 933 animals, while cattle were 6,1% up at 50 794 animals.

However, auctioned sheep declined from 13 482 in the second quarter of 2022 to 9 386 during the quarter under review.
Total fish landings for the second quarter of 2023 declined by 24,7%, recording 81 469 tonnes, compared to 108 179 tonnes recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2022.

All fish species recorded declines in landings during the period under review, except for monk, which recorded an increase in landings of 14,5%.

Horse mackerel registered the highest landings of 44 548 tonnes, followed by 33 816 tonnes of hake, and monk in third place, recording 1 825 tonnes.

The fish products, mainly hake, were destined to Spain, accounting for 36,6% exports, followed by the Democratic Republic of Congo with a share of 15,4% for horse mackerel, and Zambia with a share of 14,3% also for horse mackerel in third position.

Fish and crustaceans, molluscs and other aquatic invertebrates valued at N$173,3 million were imported during the second quarter of 2023, compared to N$274,1 million recorded in the second quarter of 2022.

These products were mainly from Falkland Islands, accounting for 65,8%, and were mainly frozen cuttlefish and squid, South Africa with 20,2%, mainly hake, and Spain with 4,5% for sardines.
– email: matthew@namibian.com.na

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