New trade statistics on Botswana have shown that the country’s exports rose while imports fell in the month of September. Statistics Botswana’s Monthly Digest for September revealed that total imports in the period under review were valued at P4, 603.2 million, a decrease of 4.7 percent (P224.7 million) from the August 2015 value of P4, 827.8 million.
On the other hand, total exports were valued at P4, 202.7 million, a rise of 38.6 percent (P1, 165.6 million) from the August 2015 value of P3, 031.2 million.
The data agency said in comparison of September 2015 import figures to September 2014 import value shows a decrease of 26.5 percent (P1, 656.1 million), from P6, 259.3 million recorded during September 2014 to P4, 603.2 million recorded during the reference month.
In terms of exports, the agency noted that as a result of rough diamonds from the aggregation process not being exported on a monthly basis, fluctuations in the value of total exports are observed.
“Values are high during the months when rough diamonds from the aggregation process are exported and are low when there is insignificant exportation from the aggregation process,” it said.
Total exports for September 2015 show an increase of 17.0 percent (P611.6 million) from the September 2014 value of P3, 591.1 million.
Composition of imports by principal commodities for September 2015 shows that diamonds contributed the most to total imports (P4, 603.2 million), having contributed 17.8 percent (P817.7 million).
Diamonds are followed by Machinery & Electrical Equipment with 17.1 percent (P788.1 million), Chemicals & Rubber Products with 13.4 percent (P617.4 million) and Fuel with 13.0 percent (P600.1 million). Food, Beverages & Tobacco , Vehicles & Transport Equipment and Metal & Metal Products contributed 12.4 percent (P573.0 million), 9.0 percent (P415.6 million) and 4.6 percent (P213.0 million) respectively, to total imports during the month under review.
This is the same for exports as 84.7 percent (P3, 559.6 million) was attributed to exports of diamonds. “These diamonds consist of diamonds from Diamond polishing companies as well as those from the aggregation process.”
From the total exports, 29.9 percent (P1, 256.8 million) were headed to SADC with South Africa and Namibia receiving 16.7 percent (P696.1 million) and 11.0 percent (P462.7 million) respectively, of total exports during the month under review.
Asia as a block provided the largest external market for Botswana products by value, having received exports valued at P1, 552.6 million, representing 36.9 percent of total exports during September 2015. India and United Arab Emirates (UAE) received most of the exports destined to Asia at the values of P698.5 million (16.6 percent) and P357.8 million (8.5 percent) in that order of total exports. Israel, Singapore, Thailand and Hong Kong followed with contributions of P198.0 million (4.7 percent), P126.4 million (3.0 percent), P81.5 million (1.9 percent) and P61.9 million (1.5 percent) respectively.
Exports destined to the EU were valued at P888.2 million, representing 21.1 percent of total exports during the period under review. Belgium received most exports destined to EU, having received 19.7 percent (P826.5 million) of total exports during the month.
Other countries where Botswana exported most of her products include Canada, the United States of America (USA) and Switzerland with shares of 6.0 percent (P249.9 million), 4.3 percent (P179.9 million) and 1.2 percent (P51.7 million) respectively during the same period.