A decline in cashew nut exports has seen Tanzania's trade earning reduce to $563.5 million in the year ending September, from $1 billion in the same period in 2018.
According to the Bank of Tanzania’s (BoT) monthly economic review for October, the decrease in cashewnuts exports is attributed to a drop in prices in the world market and reduced volumes after a government initiative to safeguard farmers’ earnings.
The BoT review estimates that about 90,000 tonnes of cashewnuts stock from the 2018/2019 season were exported in August and September.
However, the value of exports of coffee and tea improved, supported by favourable weather conditions.
Meanwhile, services payments fell by 10.1 per cent to $1.9 billion, attributed to a decline in travel payments.
Foreign payments for transport services, mainly freight, rose by 18.8 per cent to $986.2 million in line with the growth of imports.
However, the report shows that the value of goods and services exports rose by 5.2 per cent to $9 billion due to an increase in the services receipts and value of non-traditional exports—which are all products other than cocoa beans, logs and lumber, unprocessed gold and other minerals, and electricity.
Exports of non-traditional goods increased to $4 billion from $3 billion the previous year. Earnings from all major categories of non-traditional exports increased, except for fish and fish products.
Exports of manufactured goods increased by 32.6 per cent to $1 billion, driven by sisal products, iron and steel, glass and glassware, manufactured tobacco and fertilisers.
Capital goods imports—mostly for infrastructure projects— grew by 21.6 per cent to $3.8 billion. Oil imports, which accounted for 22.5 per cent of imports, increased by 15.8 per cent to $2 billion.