Facing its worst economic crisis in years, prompted by the fall in the price of crude oil, Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy has recorded its lowest export since January 2013.
This was according to a report released Sunday, by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Tagged ‘Merchandise Trade Declines in Q4, 2015, the report noted that the total value of Nigeria’s exports trade last year was N7,2516.6 billion, 30 percent lower than the previous year (2014).
The NBS report, which rued the poor state of foreign trade in the fourth quarter of 2015, indicated that the nation’s import fell 9.2 percent, adding that the decline helped mitigate a trade balance.
The balance of trade for 2015 was N3.03 trillion, down from N8.93 trillion, a year earlier ($15.2 billion – $44.9 billion).
“The total value of Nigeria’s merchandise trade during the Fourth Quarter of 2015 stood at N3, 653.1 billion, 9.2% lower than the value of N4, 021.4billion recorded in the preceding quarter.
“For the 2015 calendar year, the country’s total trade was recorded at N16,426.8billion, amounting to N7,251.6 billion or 30.6% less than the total trade value recorded for 2014.
“A decrease of N676.4billion or 9.2% in the total imports in 2015 helped to mitigate the declining trade balance, which stood at N3, 030.8 billion, N5, 898.9 billion less than the value in 2014,” the NBS stated.
The positives recorded on the import sector reads: “The value of Nigeria’s imports stood at N1, 576.4billion at the end of Q4, 2015; this was 6.6% less than the value (N1, 688.2billion) recorded in the preceding quarter.
“Comparison with the corresponding quarter of 2014, showed a decrease of N454.6 billion or 22.4%.
“The structure of Nigeria’s imports was dominated by the imports of “Machinery and transport equipment”, “Mineral Fuel”, and “Food and Live Animals”, which accounted for 32.4%, 18.5%, and 15.0% respectively in 2015.
“These commodities contributed the most to the value of import trade in 2015, whereas commodities such as “Crude inedible materials”, “Oils, fats & waxes”, and “Beverages & tobacco”, contributed the least; accounting for 1.6%, 1.0%, and 0.5% respectively (Table 6).
“Imports by section (Table 2), were dominated by the imports of “Boilers, machinery and appliances”, which accounted for N1, 580.0billion or 23.6% of the total value of imports in 2015.
“Other commodities which contributed noticeably to the value of imports in 2015 were “Mineral Products” at N1, 273.4billion (19.0%), “Vehicles, aircraft and associated parts” at N608.5billion (9.1%), “Products of the chemical and allied industries” at N578.9billion (8.6%) and “base metals and articles of base metals” at N574.1billion (8.5%).
According to the imports classified by Broad Economic Category In 2015, “Industrial supplies not elsewhere classified” ranked first with N1,824.1billion or 27.2%, followed by “Capital goods and parts” with the value of N1,516.7 billion or 22.6%, and “Fuels and Lubricants” with the value of N1,210.7billion or 18.1% while the value of Premium Motor Spirit stood at N288.6billion.
The provisional figures for “crude oil component of total trade decreased by N4,945.9billion or 41.6% as against the level recorded in 2014” the NBS added.