Namibia’s exports at N$12 billion in January

Alex Shimuafeni

Namibia’s export earnings recorded an increase of 9,4% in January this year – now standing at N$12 billion.

This is up from N$10,9 billion recorded in December 2023.

According to the Namibia International Merchandise Trade Statistics Bulletin issued by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), the import bill for the month under review increased by 16,3% from N$11,8 billion recorded during the preceding month, resulting in a worsened trade deficit of N$1,8 billion when compared to a trade deficit of N$885 million recorded in December 2023.

Issuing the bulletin, Alex Shimuafeni, the NSA’s chief executive and statistician general, says Namibia’s exports recorded N$12,0 billion during January 2024, compared to N$7,8 billion registered during the same month in the previous year.

“On the import side, the value of trade for the month under study amounted to N$13,8 billion, an increase of N$3,0 billion when compared to January 2023,” Shimuafeni says.

He says the monthly increase in the export of goods was mainly reflected in uranium, which increased by N$3,1 billion, civil engineering and contractors and equipment, which rose by N$189 million, and ores and concentrates of base metals, which increased by N$181 million.

Nickel ores and concentrates also rose by N$172 million, while fish exports increased by N$164 million.

This is compared to the monthly increase in imported goods, which was mainly reflected in copper ores and concentrates, which rose by N$2,9 billion, inorganic chemical elements, of which the imports increased by N$282 million, followed by motor cars for the transportation of people, which increased by N$185 million.

The NSA says imported civil engineering and contractors’ equipment increased by N$118 million, and nickel ores and concentrates increased by N$113 million.

The bulletin says in January 2024, the mining and quarrying industry emerged as the industry with the largest export of goods valued at N$6,3 billion, absorbing 53% of total exports, and products from the industry increased by N$1,6 billion when compared to the previous month.

The manufacturing industry came second with a share of 41,3% of the total exports in January 2024, with exports from this industry decreasing by N$120 million month on month.

“Furthermore, agriculture, forestry and fishing ranked third, contributing 4,1% of the total exports.”

According to the NSA bulletin, only trade deficits were recorded for Namibia between January 2023 and January 2024, averaging N$2,6 billion.

During January 2024, Namibia witnessed trade surpluses with China of N$2,8 billion, Botswana (N$1,7 billion) and Canada (N$782 million).

Trade deficits were recorded against South Africa, Peru and Bulgaria at N$1,5 billion each during the period under review.

Namibia’s trade balance worsened in January this year, when compared to the preceding month.

Copper ores and concentrates contributed the most to the trade deficit with a deficit of N$2,9 billion.

In second place was petroleum oils, with a deficit of N$2,2 billion, followed by inorganic chemical elements, with a deficit of N$373 million in third position.

On the other hand, Namibia exported uranium worth N$3,8 billion, yielding a trade surplus of N$3,8 billion.

The second and third place were occupied by precious stones (diamonds) and non-monetary gold, recording trade surpluses valued at N$1,5 billion and N$1,3 billion, respectively.

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