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The ins and outs

The ins and outs
IN AND OUT: Diamonds led both the import and export lists

Breaking down Botswana’s imports and exports for March

March proved to be a busy period for Botswana in terms of trade, with both imports and exports rising drastically from the previous month.

In total, the country’s exports stood at P8 billion – a 26.1 percent increase from the P6.3 billion raised in February.

The country was also quick to splash the cash, forking out P8.9 billion on imports, which is a whopping 40.2 percent increase on the P6.4 billion spent in Feb.

Breaking down the figures, Diamonds ruled the roost in both exports and imports, accounting for 93.5 percent and 40.1 percent of each.

Despite being world-famous for our beef, during the 31-day period under review, meat and meat products accounted for just 0.1 percent of total export commodities.

In terms of destination, the bulk of Botswana’s outgoing goods ended up in Asia, with the continent accounting for 71.5 percent of total exports.

Of these, United Arab Emirates (UAE) received 33.2 percent with India close behind on 25.3 percent. For both nations, Diamonds proved by far the biggest appeal.

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Meanwhile, the European Union (EU) received 18.8 percent of Botswana’s imports. Belgium (18.7) was almost entirely responsible for this, with the two nations dealing exclusively in Diamonds.

At the bottom of the pecking order was the Southern African Development Community (SADC), with the region responsible for just 7.7 percent of Botswana’s March exports.

However, SADC was much more active in terms of in-coming goods, accounting for half of Botswana’s imports.

Leading commodities included: fuel, food, beverages, and tobacco, as well as machinery and electrical equipment.

Most of the goods from the regional bloc were from South Africa, with the near neighbour responsible for 47.8 percent of total goods sourced valued at 4.3 billion.

Next on the list was Asia, which supplied 30.8 percent, or P2.8 billion, of Botswana’s March imports.

The major commodity groups included: diamonds, and chemicals, and rubber products.

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The EU, meanwhile, supplied goods to Botswana at the value of P1.5 billion, with the major commodity group being diamonds and most of the imports coming from Belgium.

March 2020 March 2021

EXPORTS: P4.5 billion P8 billion
IMPORTS: P6.3 billion P8.9 billion

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