South Africa recorded a trade deficit of R1.09 billion for November, the SA Revenue Service (Sars) said on Thursday.
“The R1.09 billion trade balance deficit for November 2016 is attributable to exports of R99.64 billion and imports of R100.73 billion,” Sars said in a statement.
“Exports for the year-to-date (January 1 to November 30 2016) grew by 5.8 percent, from R948.37 billion in 2015 to R1,003.51 billion in 2016.”
The revenue service said the year-to-date deficit of R14.61 billion was lower than the R59.28 billion deficit for the same period last year.
The export of mineral products, precious metals and stone grew by 20 percent compared to October. The export of base metals, vehicle and transport equipment, and chemical product grew by 11 percent, 7 percent and 12 percent respectively.
The month-on-month import movements showed vehicles and transport equipment imports rose by 57 percent (R4.2 billion), mineral products by 20 percent (R2.4 billion), machinery and electronics by seven percent (R1.6 billion), prepared foodstuffs by 23 percent (R770 million), and equipment component by 25 percent (R1.9 billion).
Exports to Asian countries increased by R4.3 billion to R31 billion from October to November, with imports dropping by R129 million to just under R43 billion. This means the trade balance deficit stood at R11.9 billion for November, a decrease from the October deficit of R16.4 billion.
The trade balance deficit with Europe also grew to R12.2 billion in November compared to R9.5 billion the previous month. This was due to exports growing by R1.8 billion to R21.8 billion and imports increasing by R4.5 billion to R34 billion.
Exports to the Americas increased by R873 million to R9.1 billion, while imports grew by R1.1 billion, leading to a R2.3 billion deficit in November.
South Africa’s only trade surplus was with the rest of Africa and the Oceania region.
Exports to neighbouring African countries grew by R1.9 billion to R30 billion, while South Africa received R3 billion more in imports from the continent to total R11 billion, increasing the trade surplus to R18 billion.
A trade surplus of R222 million was recorded with the Oceania region as a result of exports totalling R1.1 billion rand and imports decreasing to R953 million.
– African News Agency (ANA)