Lebanon Businessnews News

Trade deficit
shrinks by 56 percent
Real exports and imports are down
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Real exports of industrial and agricultural goods, which consist of total exports excluding pearls, precious stones, fuel and oil products, decreased by 3.5 percent to $536 million in the first quarter of 2020, compared with the same period a year earlier, according to the Customs.

Total export figures, including fuel products and precious stones, increased by 6.7 percent to $914 million.

Real imports, excluding pearls, precious stones and fuel products, dropped by $1.4 billion (47 percent) to $1.6 billion.
Overall imports including these categories decreased from $4.9 billion during the first quarter of 2019 to $2.9 billion in the same period of the current year. Fuel products represent 32 percent of total imports.

The real trade deficit narrowed by 56 percent to $1.1 billion. The official trade deficit shrank by 51 percent to $2 billion.
Food imports dropped from $308 million to $186 million during that period.

The top export destination of industrial and agricultural goods is Saudi Arabia with $56 million. Prepared food, chemical products, and vegetables are the major categories exported to Saudi Arabia. Syria and the United Arab Emirates come second in terms of real exports which reached $34 million for each country. Exports to Syria mainly consist of vegetables while exports to UAE largely consist of chemical products. Part of exports to Syria is re-exported to Arab countries.

Reported by Gisele Khalaf
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Date Posted: May 29, 2020