Oct. 27 (ESAT News)–Ethiopia posted a trade deficit of $7.5 billion in the last fiscal year that ended in July, Bloomberg reported. Access Capital attributed the deficit to slowing growth in exports and increased import costs.
The Ministry of Trade also disclosed that Ethiopia’s export earnings dropped by 7 percent to a paltry $699 million in the last four months. The export of coffee and oil seeds plunged significantly.
Bloomberg reported quoting official sources that Foreign sales of coffee earned just $199.3 million in the four months through Oct. 10, compared with $201.9 million in the same period a year earlier.
According to the ministry gold was the second-most valuable export in the quarter, which increased by two percent to $132.7 million. The stimulant chat brought 69.5 million USD, the ministry told Bloomberg.
Export of oil seeds fell by 27 percent in the quarter to 60.8 million, but exports of cereals surged to 63 percent to $48.1 million, the ministry said.
Meanwhile, though the new prime minister, Hailemariam Dasalegn, claimed recently that Ethiopia’s economy would maintain its “double digit” growth, the International Monetary Fund foretasted that economic growth could be 7 percent. IMF had contradicted the official growth rate by posting a 5.5 growth for the last fiscal year.
IMF also warned the government last year that excessive public spending was the principal cause of its rising inflation, while private bank lending restrictions and a tightly controlled business environment would slow economic growth.