Trade deficit decreases during second quarter of 2018

WINDHOEK, 20 SEP – Namibia’s trade deficit declined in the second quarter (Q2) of 2018 compared to last year because of increased exports, the latest quarterly Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report released by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) on Thursday shows.
The second quarter of 2018 trade deficit amounted to N.dollars 0.17 billion (170 million) compared to N.dollars 1.39 billion during the same period last year.
The first quarter trade deficit for this year was N.dollars 8.35 billion.
Statistician-General and Chief Executive Officer of the NSA, Alex Shimuafeni told a media conference in the capital on Thursday that strong growth in real value added was recorded in the mining and quarrying, construction, utility sectors during the period under review.
The utility (water and electricity) sector posted a double digit growth of 16,7 per cent in real value added compared to a nine per cent growth recorded during Q2 of 2017.
The strong performance was attributed to the electricity subsector which grew by 17,5 per cent compared to 12,5 per cent in the same quarter in 2017.
“The noteworthy performance in the subsector is primarily driven by the increase in locally generated electricity from the Ruacana Hydro Power Station, consequently reducing import during the quarter under review,” the report said.
Electricity sales registered a 20,1 per cent growth with the volume of more than 978 212 387 kilowatt per hour. The volume of electricity the country imported during Q2 of 2018 was 552 446 000 kilowatt per hour, posting a decline of 19,3 per cent in the imports of electricity.
The water subsector grew by 12,4 per cent in real value added in Q2 of 2018 due to an increase in demand of water for human consumption, compared to a decline of 5,9 per cent that was recorded the same quarter in 2017.
The mining and quarrying sector registered a strong growth of 22,4 per cent in real value added during Q2 of 2018, compared to 19,6 per cent recorded in the corresponding quarter of 2017.
The strong performance in the mining and quarrying sector was attributed to diamond and uranium mining subsectors that registered strong growths in real value added of 30.5 per cent and 62.3 percent respectively, with diamond subsector estimated to have grown by 30,5 per cent compared to 25,7 per cent registered in the same quarter of 2017.
This performance was attributed to an increase in carats produced.
The uranium subsector was estimated to have recorded a growth of 62,3 per cent compared to 15,6 per cent recorded in the same quarter of 2017.