Windhoek – Diamonds and an assortment of other minerals continue to be the backbone of the Namibian economy, while the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) remains a key revenue source for the country.
This is according to the latest figures from the Namibia Statistics Agency.
The NSA this week said China was primarily buying uranium and copper re-exports from Namibia.
SACU – of which Namibia is a member along with Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho and South Africa – is still the country’s largest export destination for goods, mostly diamonds, accounting for 46.2 percent of exports.
Namibia has also seen increased trade with Brazil, Russia, India and China, as well as the European Union, which account for a market share of 27.9 percent and 18.3 percent of exports respectively.
The Namibia Statistics Agency also reported an increase in the copper trade.
“However, the country’s trade balance remained in a deficit amounting to N$3.2 billion (US$215 million) from deficits of N$143 million (US$9.6 million) recorded in April 2021 and N$1.2 billion (US$80.5 billion) in May 2020. Namibia’s trade composition by partner illustrated that China emerged as Namibia’s largest export market, while South Africa was the main import market,” the agency said.
The Namibia Statistics Agency added that the bulk composition of Namibia’s export basket mainly comprised minerals such as copper, uranium, diamonds and fish. Fish remained the only non-mineral product among the top five exports.
“On the other hand, the import basket consisted mainly of copper; petroleum oils; copper ores; motor vehicles, and ships, boats and other floating structures. The May 2021 trade figures indicated that re-exports fell by 60.3 percent month-on-month and by 20.3 percent year-on-year,” the stats agency highlighted.
Copper had the largest share of all goods re-exported (57.8 percent), with most of it destined for China, the Netherlands, France and Belgium. Most of the copper re-exported originated from Zambia and the DRC.“Important to note is that copper appears to dominate both trade flows, which is an indication of the important role the country plays as a major logistics hub for SADC,” the Namibia Statistics Agency said.