Namibia-Botswana trade worth N$20b in 2023

Bisey Uirab

Namibia and Botswana’s trade value amounted to approximately N$20 billion in 2023, Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Bisey /Uirab has revealed.

Namibia’s key export products to Botswana include diamond mineral products, petroleum products, livestock, dairy, poultry, other agricultural products and fish products, while Namibia imports coal, veterinary medicines, building materials and base metal products.

“Many Botswana businesses operate in our country, including Choppies, Bank Gaborone and others. Conversely, the Capricorn Group, which owns Bank Windhoek, has a strong presence in Botswana through Bank Gaborone,” he says.

/Uirab says there remains significant potential for increased business interactions between Namibian and Botswana business people.

“Conscious efforts must be made by the business community to undertake joint projects in these two countries. We know we can do better in this area and more in this regard,” he adds.

Trading with Botswana, a neighbouring country, provides numerous benefits, including reduced transport and logistical costs, minimal transaction costs due to the interconnectedness of financial systems and ease of market entry compared to distant markets.

These remarks were made at the opening ceremony of the Swakopmund International Trade Expo, held this week under the theme ‘Efficient Connectivity and Resource Beneficiation for Sustainable Growth in Africa’.

The wide-ranging interest and attendance, extending beyond the Erongo region, presents an opportunity for participating entities to tap into and serve a diverse market, increasing brand awareness beyond Namibia’s geographical boundaries.

This year, about 150 exhibitors, ranging from large corporations, SMEs, vendors, as well as offices, ministries and agencies showcased their products and services.

“Our assessment indicates that this event provides enormous opportunities for trading, networking, insightful policy discussions, best practice information and brand marketing, among many other benefits,” /Uirab said.

Speaking at the same event, Botswana president Mokgweetsi Masisi said in 2023 Botswana exported to Namibia goods worth US$60,9 million (N$ 1,1 billion).

“Diamond exports constituted 48% of this total, with coal and electrical cables making up 10% and 5% respectively. Additional notable exports from Botswana to Namibia encompass passenger vehicles and fibre-optic cables,” he said.

He added that despite the warm relations between the two nations, more still needs to be done to fully tap into the nation’s bilateral economic prospects. – The Brief

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