Namibia’s trade decreases slightly in 2019
In 2019, Namibia’s overall trade (total of exports and imports) amounted to N$203,019 million, slightly lower (0.4%) than 2018 level of N$203,744 million, the Namibia Statistics Agency reported.
The Agency’s 2019 Trade Bulletin shows that the exports revenue were N$91,766 million showing a 1.5% decline from last year, while, the imports bill stood at N$111,253 million, an increase by 0.7% from N$110,620 million last year.
Subsequently, the decline in exports and the increase in imports resulted in a trade deficit of N$19,487 million, widening from its 2018 level of N$17, 496 million.
Namibia’s trade continues to be highly concentrated to a few countries and commodities, showing Namibia’s dependence on a few countries for its exports as well as for meeting its import requirements.
For the country’s export market, the ten leading trade partners (China, South Africa, Botswana, Belgium, Spain, Zambia, United Arab Emirates, Democratic Republic of Congo, Italy and the Netherlands) represented 80.7% of total exports. In terms of imports the ten leading countries (South Africa, Zambia, China, Bulgaria, India, Botswana, United States, Peru, Democratic Republic of Congo and Chile) constituted 80.5% of total imports.
The statistics further show commodities traded in 2019 were also concentrated to a few commodities with the 10 leading export commodities accounting for 86.5% of total exports while on the imports side the ten leading commodities represented 65.9% of total imports.
“There is a need for Namibia to diversify her export basket to mitigate the risks associated with the lack of diversification,” said Alex Shimuafeni, Statistician-General of the Namibia Statistics Agency.