Nigeria’s total foreign trade for 2020 dropped by 10.32 percent – a 32.42 trillion naira according to a report by the National Bureau of Statistics.
During this period, Nigeria’s export stood at 12.52 trillion naira while imports amounte d to 19.9 trillion naira. This means that the country imported more goods and services than it exported to other countries within the period under review.
In 2017, the total trade report stood at 23.16 trillion naira, in 2018, 31.69 trillion naira, in 2019, 36.15 trillion naira, and 32.42 trillion naira in 2020.
Also, the country recorded a trade deficit of N7.37 trillion in 2020 –the first time the economy has reported a negative trade outcome since 2017.
In 2017 and 2018, Nigeria had a trade balance of N4.04 trillion and N5.37 trillion. While N2.3 trillion was recorded in 2019. This declined to -N7.37 in 2020.
According to the NBS report, “The value of total imports increased by 17.3 percent to 19.89 trillion naira in 2020, compared with the 16.96 naira trillion recorded in 2019.
In 2020, machinery and transport equipment accounted for 36.6 percent of total imports, while chemicals/related products and mineral fuels constituted 18.2 percent and 15.3 percent respectively.
The report also shows that imports from China accounted for 28.3 percent of the total imports, followed by India (8.5 percent); the United States (7.57 percent); the Netherlands (7.2 percent); and Denmark (5.4 percent).
Total exports dropped by 34.8 percent to 12.52 trillion naira in 2020 from 19.19 trillion naira in 2019.
Fourth-quarter report in 2020
In Q4 2020, Nigeria majorly exported mineral products, accounting for N2.96 trillion. The second-largest component was vehicles, aircraft and parts, which were valued at 111.3 billion naira. Vegetable products worth 39.9 billion naira were exported within the period.
The top five export destinations in Q4 2020 were India, Spain, South Africa, the Netherlands and the United States, with goods valued at 547.0 billion naira, 313.4 billion naira, 256.7 billion naira, 194.5 billion naira and 170.4 billion naira, respectively, shipped to the countries.
These countries collectively accounted for 46.39 percent of the value of total exports in Q4 2020.
In Q4 2020, the bulk of export transactions were conducted through Apapa port in Lagos, accounting for 93.9 percent of total exports, followed by Port-Harcourt, which recorded 4.6 percent of the total.
In terms of imports, Apapa port also recorded the highest transactions at 42.8 percent, followed by Tin Can Island (also in Lagos) which accounted for 17.4 percent, while Port-Harcourt received 10.35 percent of total imports.