By November 2020, Lebanon’s trade deficit totaled $6.81B, narrowing from the $14.48B registered in the same period last year. In fact, total imported goods retreated by 45.78% year-on-years (YOY) to $10.08 in November 2020. Meanwhile, Lebanon’s total exports declined by 4.31% YOY to $3.26B during the same period.
In term of value, the “Mineral products” grasped the highest share of total imported goods with a stake of 28.71%. “Products of the chemical or allied industries” ranked second, composing 15.02% of the total imports, while “Machinery, electrical instruments” and “Pearls, Precious stones and metals” grasped the respective shares of 8.10% and 8.01%.
In details, Lebanon imported $2.89B worth of “Mineral Products”, compared to a value of $5.99B in the same period last year..
In turn, the values of “Products of the chemical or allied industries”, “Vegetable Products” and “Prepared foodstuffs; beverages, tobacco” recorded yearly drops of 18.20%, 18.45% and 40.14% to settle at $1.51B, $706.6M and $681.61M, respectively. It is worth noting, that the values of “Vehicles, aircraft, vessels, transport equipment” recorded yearly drop of 64.17% to settle at $400M.This decrease is explained by the big reduction in car sector in Lebanon, which incidentally dropped by more than 90% in early 2021.
The top three import sources by November 2020 were US, Greece, and Turkey grasping the respective shares of 8.87%, 7.63% and 6.85% of the total value of imports.
On the exports front, Lebanon’s top exported products were “Pearls, precious stones and metals” grasping a share of 40.68% of the total. Moreover, “Prepared foodstuffs, beverages & tobacco” and “Machinery, electrical instruments” each grasped a share of 10.42% and 8.86%, respectively, of the total.
In detail, the value of “Pearls, precious stones and metals” decreased yearly by 0.41% to $1.33B by November 2020. Meanwhile, the value of “Prepared foodstuffs, beverages & tobacco” observed an uptick of 1.13% to reach $340.24M while “Machinery, electrical instruments”, witnessed a yearly decline of 15.97% to reach $289.4M by November 2020.
In the first 11 month of 2020, the top three export destinations were Switzerland, UAE and KSA with the respective shares of 31.58%, 12.33% and 5.98%.
As a matter of fact, the volume of imports is expected to further decline in the upcoming months due to foreign currency shortages, where BDL’s governor had announced that the support of the essential goods will not last for a long time. The good news is that exports have declined marginally and could even be expected to increase the depreciation of the Lebanese pound.
Trade Deficit by November 2020 ($B)