BULAWAYO,— Zimbabwe’s trade deficit narrowed by 21 percent to $1,2 billion in the first seven months of the year, latest trade data from the statistics agency shows.
Figures from the Zimbabwe Statistics Agency (Zimstat) show that between January and July imports amounted to $3,1 billion while exports trailed at $1,9 billion.
Major exports included semi-processed gold worth $468 million, nickel mattes $305 million, flue cured tobacco worth $282 million, nickel ores and concentrates worth $201 million and ferrochrome worth $184 million.
Imports included diesel ($463 million), unleaded petrol ($225 million), electricity ($108 million), crude soya bean oil ($62 million), among others.
Zimbabwe’s reliance on imports remains high despite government measures to control imports as the local industry remains in quandary.
During the same period last year, the country’s imports were $2,9 billion against exports of $1,3 billion, giving trade deficit of $1,5 billion.
Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa has forecast a $1,5 billion trade deficit for 2017. Last year Zimbabwe’s trade deficit narrowed to $2,3 million from $3,3 million in 2015.