According to the Lebanese Customs, Lebanon’s trade deficit broadened by 7.92 % to $13.16B by October 2016, as exports increased by a yearly 2.75% to $2.56B, while imports added 7.04% y-o-y to $15.72B.
On the imports’ side, as average oil prices registered a fall from $57.09/barrel by October 2015 to $49.02/barrel by October 2016, mineral products, which constituted 21.10% of the total import value, witnessed a 17.93% y-o-y rise in volume. However, this rise in volume was accompanied with an increase in total value, which surged by 32.11% y-o-y to $3.32B. As for products of the chemical or allied industries, which grasped 10.81% of the total value of imported goods, they rose by a yearly 4.70% to $1.70B. However, machinery and electrical instruments (9.83% of the total value) declined by 8.05% from 2015 to stand at $1.55B by October 2016.
The top countries Lebanon imported from during the first 10 months of the year were China, Italy, USA, Germany, and Greece with respective shares of 11.28%, 7.40%, 6.42%, 6.14% and 5.43% of the total value of imports.
As for exports, “pearls, precious stones and metals” products, grasping the largest share of exported goods (28.31%), escalated from $379.11M by October 2015 to reach $725.48M by October 2016. As for prepared foodstuffs, beverages and tobacco, they comprised 14.31% of exported goods’ value amounting to $366.86M by October 2016, compared to $402.78M by October 2015. Moreover, exports of machinery and electrical instruments, that take up to 11.30% of the total exports, fell by 15.66% y-o-y to $289.52M by October 2016.
The top export destinations for the same period were South Africa, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Syria and Iraq with respective shares of 23.12%, 9.11%, 8.11%, 5.88% and 5.52% of the total value of exports.
Trade Deficit by October (in $B)
Source: Lebanese Customs