July exports up 17pct, trade deficit falls to $337mln – Zimstat

July exports up 17pct, trade deficit falls to $337mln – Zimstat

HARARE, August 21 (The Source)- Zimbabwe narrowed its trade deficit to $337,5 million in July from $362 million in June, latest data from the country’s statistics agency shows.

Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (Zimstat) data show that exports in July were up 17 percent to $226 million compared to the previous month.

Some of the exports include beef, tobacco and other agricultural produce as well as wines, minerals and scrap metal.

Imports in July were up marginally from $555 million the previous month to $563 million.

Cumulatively to July, Zimbabwe’s imports stand at $3,6 billion while exports amount to $1,4 billion indicating the country’s continued reliance on imported goods as local industry remains depressed.

Some of the imported products include fish, milk, cheese, sausage casings, agricultural products including maize, sugar related confectionaries, biscuits, electrical energy, chemicals, fertilisers, vehicles and generators.

Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa last month proposed a number of measures including duty hikes on non-essential products to try curb reliance on imports.

In 2014 the country recorded a $3 billion trade deficit.