Nigeria’s total foreign trade rose by 8.9% to N9,120.2billion in the fourth quarter of 2020, from the level recorded in the third quarter of 2020. However, it was lower by 9.9% when compared to the fourth quarter of 2019.
The value of trade in Q4 was the highest recorded in 2020, according to the Foreign Trade in Goods Statistics (Q4 2020) released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday.
The export component of trade stood at N3,194.5 billion, an increase of 6.7% compared to Q3 2020, but a drop of 33% compared to Q4 2019.
On the other hand, total imports rose by 10.1% to a record high at N5,925.7 in Q4 2020, compared to Q3 2020, and a 10.8% increase compared to Q4 2019.
According to the report, Imports also accounted for 65% of total trade in Q4 2020, compared to 53% the previous year while exports accounted for Further, 35% of total trade in Q4 2020 from 47% in 2019.
As the value of imports nearly doubled the value of exports, the trade deficit rose to its highest level and a fifth consecutive quarterly deficit at -N2,731.2billion, an increase of 14.30% compared to the preceding quarter.
On an annual basis, total trade was valued at N32,420.7 billion in 2020, a 10.3% decline compared to the value recorded in 2019.
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The value of total imports in 2020 stood at N19,898.0billion, 17.3% higher than in 2019, while total exports was valued at N12,522.7billion, 34.8% less than in 2019. The annual merchandise trade deficit in 2020 was recorded at -N7,375.3billion.
The predominant export remained crude oil, which was valued at N2,424.8billion, representing 81.02% of total exports while non-crude oil was valued at N568.2billion, or 18.98% of total export during the review period, according to the report.
Ifunanya Ikueze is an Engineer, Safety Professional, Writer, Investor, Entrepreneur and Educator.