Exports value edges to $12.6bn

Service receipts and non-traditional exports pushed up the export value of goods and services to 12,616.7 million US dollars in the year to May, higher than 10,777.9 million US dollars in the previous year.

According to the Bank of Tanzania (BoT) monthly economic review for May this year, non-traditional goods exports recorded an annual growth of 4.7 per cent driven by manufactured goods and minerals, particularly gold, coal, and diamonds.

Export of coal increased by about four times to 233.7 million US dollars from 53.8 million US dollars owing to growing demand for alternative energy in the wake of supply challenges induced by the war in Ukraine.

Exports of diamonds also edged up to 57 million US dollars from 19.4 million US dollars because of price effects.

Gold exports increased to 2,883.9 million US dollars from 2,691.4 million US dollars largely on account of volume effects.

Manufactured goods worth 1,466.4 million US dollars were exported during the year to May, 13.7 per cent higher compared to the corresponding period in 2022, mostly driven by cement and fertiliser.

Exports of traditional goods also increased to 761.7 million US dollars from 721 million US dollars with all crops recording increase, except cashew nut, cloves and tea.

Traditional exports were 29 million US dollars lower than 33.2 million US dollars in May last year whereas non-traditional exports increased to 594.9 million US dollars from 483.7 million US dollars in May last year.

Services receipts increased to 5,228.4 million US dollars in the year ending May from 3,724.2 million US dollars in the corresponding period last year largely explained by the rise in travel (tourism) and transport receipts.

Travel receipts increased by about two-thirds to 2,872.3 million US dollars partly explained by a 51.3 per cent rise in tourist arrivals to 1,609,303 the highest level reached historically as the tourism sector continues to recover.

On a monthly basis, service receipts also increased to 406.4 million US dollars compared with 334.8 million US dollars in May last year.

The cumulative effects of the shocks, particularly the war in Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic continued to impact the external sector of the economy.

Accordingly, the current account deficit widened to 5,276.1 million US dollars in the year ending May from 3,263.6 million US dollars in the year to May last year owing to high import bills.

The balance of payments, therefore, recorded a deficit of 512.3 million US dollars compared to a surplus of 242.5 million US dollars in the corresponding period last year.

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