The latest trade statistics released by the Namibia Statistics Agency show a slight monthly improvement in exports, but a substantial weakening from a year ago.
Trade statistics for November 2020 show a monthly increase of 2.3% in exports from October 2020 to November 2020, but they were still 3.9% lower than in November 2019. Total exports amounted to 7 , 8 billion Namibian dollars, against 8.3 billion Namibian dollars a year ago. .
Following the trend, imports also fell, but by an even higher 22.4% month-on-month and 12.1% year-on-year.
With November 2020 imports of N $ 9.5 billion, the trade balance continued to improve, recording a deficit of just N $ 1.4 billion, which is significantly lower than the very large trade deficits of Four years ago.
In the November 2020 Trade Statistics Bulletin, Statistician General Mr. Alex Shimuafeni said China is now Namibia’s most important export destination, demanding 41.3% of all exported goods. The second largest market, South Africa, has declined in export share, now receiving only around 14% of total exports. Other important markets are Botswana, Belgium and Germany.
On the import side, South Africa continues to be Namibia’s main supplier, accounting for over 42% of all imports. Other important source markets are Zambia, Bulgaria and the DRC, but these imports are mainly minerals for re-export. Only China is another important source of consumer and industrial goods.
Namibia’s main export products include the category of non-ferrous metals, mainly copper and zinc, which account for a quarter of all exports. Metal ores and scrap contribute another quarter. Other important exports are manufactures of metallic minerals, non-monetary gold and fish.
The main import products are non-ferrous metals (29.2%), metalliferous ores and scrap (7%), vehicles (6%), electrical machinery (2.8%) and iron and steel. ‘steel (2.7%).
More than half of all exports are by sea, the remainder being more or less evenly split between air and road.
The overwhelming majority of imported goods came by road (80.4%), followed by sea (17.7%) and a small fraction by air (1.8%).