According to data from the Lebanese customs, Lebanon’s trade deficit reached $5.28B in the first four months of 2016, up by 14% from the $4.63B registered by April 2015. Exports dropped by an annual 2.56% to $953.23M while imports grew by an annual 11.09% to $6.23B.
Prepared foodstuffs, beverages and tobacco accounted for 16.39% of exports, followed closely by stakes of 15.74% for pearls, precious stones and metals and 14.35% for machinery and electrical instruments.
The value of exports in all of the top classified categories witnessed yearly declines:
- Exports of prepared foodstuffs, beverages and tobacco dropped by 4% year-on-year (y-o-y) to $156.20M by April 2016
- Exports of pearls, precious stones and metals fell by 2% y-o-y to $150.03M by April 2016
- Exports of machinery and electrical instruments ticked down by 0.1% y-o-y to $136.78M by April 2016
As for imports, the largest value was grasped by mineral products with 25.08% followed by shares of 10.93% for products of the chemical or allied industries and 9.43% for machinery and electrical instruments.
- Imports of mineral products grew substantially from $933.27M by April 2015 to $1.56B by April 2016, which is mainly linked to the 57% increase in total imported volume.
- Imports of products of the chemical and allied industries rose by an annual 4% to $681.33M
- Imports of machinery and electrical instruments slid by 13% yearly to $582.49M
The top import destinations for the first four months of the year were China, the US, Italy, Holland and Germany with respective shares of 11%, 8%, 8%, 7% and 6%.
The top export destinations by April 2016 were South Africa, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Syria and Iraq with respective shares of 12%, 12%, 9%, 7% and 6%.
Lebanon’s Trade Deficit by April (In Billions of USD)
Source: Lebanese Customs