Worker remittances increase to USD 279M The balance in the merchandise trade account recorded a deficit of US dollars 123 million in July 2022, compared to the deficit of US dollars 606 million recorded in July 2021, Central Bank stated.
Meanwhile, the cumulative deficit in the trade account during January-July 2022 narrowed to US dollars 3,637 million from US dollars 4,922 million recorded over the same period in 2021.
Terms of trade, i.e., the ratio of the price of exports to the price of imports, deteriorated by 3.0 per cent in July 2022, compared to July 2021, as the increase in import prices surpassed the increase in export prices.
Overall exports: Earnings from merchandise exports grew by 5.4 per cent in July 2022, over July 2021, to US dollars 1,164 million. An increase in earnings was observed in industrial exports, while a decline was recorded in agricultural and mineral exports. Cumulative export earnings, which increased by 12.9 per cent during January-July 2022, amounted to US dollars 7,678 million, compared to US dollars 6,803 million recorded in the corresponding period in 2021.
Overall imports: Expenditure on merchandise imports declined substantially by 24.8 per cent to US dollars 1,287 million in July 2022, compared to US dollars 1,710 million in July 2021. A decline in expenditure was observed across all main categories, with the imports of investment goods and non-food consumer goods contributing the most to this decline. Meanwhile, import expenditure on a cumulative basis from January to July 2022 amounted to US dollars 11,315 million, which is a decline of 3.5 per cent (y-o-y).
Expenditure on the importation of consumer goods declined substantially by 46.2 per cent (y-o-y) in July 2022, compared to July 2021, contributed mainly by a reduction of 66.8 per cent (y- o-y) in non-food consumer goods. Expenditure on the importation of intermediate goods declined by 9.5 per cent in July 2022, compared to July 2021. Although import expenditure on fuel and fertiliser increased notably along with a relatively small increase in a few other categories, the overall decline in expenditure on intermediate goods was mainly driven by an 82.7 per cent y-o-y decline in the expenditure on base metals (mainly, iron and steel).
Worker remittances increased to US dollars 279 million during July 2022, in comparison to US dollars 274 million in the previous month, while remaining low compared to the corresponding month in the previous year.