Ghana cuts imports by $300m as trade deficit shrinks

oilGhana reduced the value of imports within the first eight months of 2013. The value of imports declined $300 million during the period.

According to the Ghana’s central bank, the country’s import value declined to $11.6 billion in the first eight months of 2013, from $11.9 billion in 2012.

“The decline came from a slowdown in both oil and non-oil imports,” the Bank of Ghana in its latest monetary policy press statement.

The BoG indicated that oil imports went down by $60.9 million to $2.3 billion, while non-oil imports also declined by 2.4% to $9.3 billion within the period.

On the export side, the central bank estimated Ghana’s merchandise exports from January to August 2013 amounted to $9.8 billion. Exports improved by 4.1% over the outturn for the same period last year, it added.

Despite increased in exports, earnings into the country fell on major commodities due to decline in international prices. Ghana’s earnings from gold fell by 12.6% to $3.4 billion, while exports of cocoa beans also declined by 21.4% to $1.4 billion during the eight-month period of 2013, the BoG stated.

Oil exports, however, increased by 46.9% to $2.8 billion, as a result of increased production.

Earnings from non-traditional exports, including cocoa products, went up by 22.2% to $2.2 billion, the BoG noted.

Comparing the imports against exports, the BoG said the trade balance for the eight-month period in 2013 improved to a deficit of $1.8 billion from a deficit of $2.5 billion in 2012.

By Ekow Quandzie

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