Total value of Nigeria’s merchandise trade at the end of Q1, 2016 stood at N2,723.9 billion, said the National Bureau of Statistics, NBS.
It pointed out that from the preceding quarter value of N3,517.4 billion, this was N793.5billion or 22.6% less.
This development, it noted arose due to a sharp decline in both imports and exports as exports saw a decline of N671.1 billion or 34.6%, while imports declined by N122.4 billion or 7.8%.
The steep decline in exports brought the country’s trade balance down to – N184.1 billion, or N548.7 bilIion less than in the preceding quarter.
The crude oil component of total trade decreased by N716.7 billion or 46.6% against the level recorded in Q4, 2015.
The country’s import trade stood at N1,454.0 billion, at the end of Q1, 2016.
This was 7.8% less than the value recorded in the preceding quarter N1,576.4 billion.
“Further comparison with the corresponding quarter of last year, showed a decrease of N273.7 billion or 15.8%. The structure of Nigeria’s import trade according to SITC was dominated by the imports of “Machinery and transport equipments”, “Mineral Fuel”, and “Chemicals and related products”, which accounted for 34.7%, 17.4%, and 14.7% respectively in 2016. These commodities contributed the most to the value of import trade in Q1, 2016, whereas commodities such as “Crude inedible materials”, “Oils, fats & waxes”, and “Beverages & tobacco”, contributed the least, accounting for 1.5%, 0.8%, and 0.6% respectively,” said the NBS.
Import trade by section was dominated by the imports of “Boilers, machinery and appliances”, which accounted for N378.4 billion or 26.0% of the total value of import trade in Q1, 2016. Other commodities which contributed noticeably to the value of import trade in the period under review were “Mineral Products” at N263.0 billion (18.1%), and “Products of the chemical and allied industries” at N137.0 billion (9.4%), “Vehicles, aircraft and parts thereof; vessels etc.” at N127.8 billion (8.8 %) and “Base metals and articles of base metals” at N105.1 billion (7.2%).
At the end of the quarter, the import trade classified by Broad economic category revealed that “Industrial supplies not elsewhere classified” ranked first with N404.4 billion or 27.8%. This was followed by “Capital goods and parts” with the value of N370.1billion or 25.5%, and “Fuels and lubricants” with N244.2 billion or 16.8%.
The country’s import trade by direction showed the country imported goods mostly from China, with an import value of N345.5 billion or 23.8% of total imports. This was followed by the United States at N127.1 billion or 8.7%, India with N89.4 billion or 6.1%, Netherlands with N73.8 billion or 5.1% and United Kingdom with N61.4 billion or 4.2% of total imports.
Imports by economic region revealed that the country consumed goods largely from Asia with import value of N611.2 billion or 42.0%.The Country also imported goods valued at N538.2 billion or 37.0% from Europe, and N201.9 billion or 13.9% from America.
The import trade within the continent of Africa totaled N82.5 billion or 5.7% while imports from the region of ECOWAS amounted to N41.3 billion.
The value of the export trade, totaled N1,269.9 billion in Q1, 2016 showing a decrease of N671.1 billion or 34.6%, over the value recorded in the preceding quarter. Year-on-Year analysis shows that the country’s exports dropped by N1,395.2 billion or 52.3% against the export value recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2015.
The structure of Nigeria’s export trade is still dominated by crude oil exports, with the contribution of crude oil to the value of total domestic export trade amounting to N821.9 billion or 64.7% (estimate figures).
Exports by section revealed that the highest export product for Nigeria in Q1, 2016 was “Mineral products” which accounted for N1,054.1 billion or 83.0%.
Other products that contributed the most to Nigeria’s exports include “Vehicles, aircraft and parts thereof; vessels etc.” and “Prepared Foodstuffs; beverages, spirits and vinegar; tobacco” whose values stood at N72.7 billion or 5.7%, and N63.6 billion or 5.0% respectively, of the total exports from Nigeria for the quarter.
Exports by continent showed that Nigeria mainly exported goods to Europe and Asia, which accounted for N467.1 billion or 36.8% and N360.6 billion or 28.4% respectively, of the total export value for Q1, 2016. Furthermore, Nigeria exported goods valued at N161.3 billion or 12.7% to the continent of Africa while export to the ECOWAS region totaled N50.4 billion.

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