Nigeria’s Trade Grew By N1.2Trillion to N7.2Trillion in Q1 2018, Records N2.1Trillion Trade Surplus – NBS

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Key Highlights

Total Trade and Trade Balance

  • The total value of Nigeria’s merchandise trade was N7,211.61 billion in the first quarter of 2018, which was a 19.74% growth from the f2igure recorded in Q4, 2017 (N6,022.93 billion) and a 35.07% growth from Q1, 2017 (N5,339.24 billion).
  • The strong growth of total trade in the reviewing quarter was mainly driven by the strong increase in export.
  • The trade balance in Q1, 2018 was a surplus of N2,175.08 billion, which is a 20.95% increase from the figure in Q4, 2017 (N1,798.30) and a 221.08% increase from the figure in Q1, 2017 (N677.42 billion).
  • The quarter under review is the first quarter in two years that the trade balance exceeded N2,000 billion.

Imports

Total Imports value was N2, 518.26 billion in Q1, 2018, 19.22% higher than Q4, 2017 (N2,112.31 billion) and 8.04% higher than Q1, 2017 (N2,330.91 billion).

  • The value of imported agricultural goods in the first quarter of 2018 (N184.49 billion) declined by 18.90% from Q4, 2017 (N227.49 billion) and by 5.87% from Q1, 2017 (N196.0 billion).
  • Raw materials imports in Q1 2018 (N284.81 billion) grew by 1.93% compared to Q4, 2017 (N279.41 billion) and by 9.89% compared to Q1, 2017 (N259.17 billion).
  • Solid minerals imports in Q1, 2018 (N12.62 billion) decreased by 17.27% on a quarter-to-quarter basis (N15.26 billion), however, increased by 3.67% on a year-to-year basis (N12.17 billion).
  • Energy goods imports in Q1, 2018 (N32.4 million) recorded 76.51% lower than Q4 2017 (N138.1 million), and 205.28% higher than Q1, 2017 (N10.6 million).
  • The value of manufactured goods imported in Q1 2018 (N1,189.97 billion) declined by 1.65% over the previous quarter (N1,209.96 billion) but increased by 12.11% over the same quarter in 2017 (N1,061.42 billion).
  • The value of Other oil products imported in Q1,2018 (N846.31 billion)  was 122.70% higher than the value in Q4, 2017 (N380.03 billion) and 5.51% higher than Q1, 2017 (N802.11 billion).

Exports

Total export value amounted to ₦ 4,693.34 billion in Q1, 2018, representing a significant growth of 20.02% over Q4, 2017 (N3,910.62 billion) and 56.01% over Q1, 2017 (N3,008.33 billion).

  • The export value for Agricultural goods in Q1, 2018 (N73.24 billion) was 63.84% higher than the value in Q4, 2017 (N44.70 billion) and 24.01% higher than the value recorded in Q1, 2017 (N59.06 billion).
  • Raw material exports value decreased by 13.62% in Q1, 2018 (N32.70 billion) compared to Q4, 2017 (N37.85 billion) but increased by 47.71% compared to Q1, 2017 (N22.13 billion).
  • Solid Minerals exports value in Q1 2018 (N26.92 billion) recorded a 12.96% quarter on quarter growth (N23.83 billion), and a 58.50% year on year growth rate compared to Q1, 2017 (N16.98 billion).
  • The value of Energy goods exported in Q1, 2018 (N10.39 billion) was 8.8% higher than that of Q4, 2017 (N9.55 billion) and 16.5% higher than the value in Q1, 2017 (N8.92 billion).
  • Manufactured goods exports in Q1 2018 (N434.37 billion) saw significant growth by 684.11% over the previous quarter (N55.39 billion), and by 576.90% when compared to Q1, 2017 (N64.17 billion).
  • The value of Crude Oil exports recorded in Q1, 2018 (N3,580.01 billion) was 10% higher than the value in Q4, 2017 (N3,251.61 billion) and 50.74% higher than the value in Q1, 2017 (N2,374.94 billion).
  • Other oil products exports in Q1, 2018 (N535.8 billion) also grew steadily in the reviewing quarter, with a 10.53% growth from Q4, 2017 (N484.65 billion) and a 15.92% growth from the value recorded in Q1, 2017 (N462.10 billion).

Major Export Trading Partners and Corresponding Share in Q1 2018 Export Trade

  • Netherlands                        20.5%
  • India                                    18.2%
  • Spain                                    8.3%
  • The United States                8.2%
  • France                                     6.3%

Major Import Trading Partners and Share to Q1 2018 Import Trade

  • China                           21.1%
  • Netherlands                12.1%
  • Belgium                       10.6%
  • The United States         6.5%
  • India                                6.3%

Major Traded Agricultural Exports in Q1 2018

  • Sesamum seeds, whether or not broken (N26.65 billion)
  • Good Fermented Nigerian Cocoa Beans (N23.30 billion)
  • Superior quality raw cocoa beans (N6.03 billion)
  • Cashew nuts, in shell (N5.03 billion)
  • Soya beans, whether or not broken (N3.46 billion)
  • Other frozen shrimps and prawns (N1.72 billion)

Overview

The total value of Nigeria’s external trade in goods amounted to N7,211.6 billion in the first Quarter of 2018, which is a growth of N1,188.7 billion or  19.74% from the N6,022.9 billion recorded in the last quarter of 2017. The total trade value in Q1, 2018 also shows a 35.07% growth compared to the amount of N5,339.24 billion recorded in same quarter last year.

The Trade balance in Q1, 2018 was N2,175.1 billion, which increased by 20.95% from the last quarter in 2017, and  221.08% over the same quarter in 2017. The significant increase of trade balance in the reviewing quarter was driven by the stronger growth in exports compared to imports.

The total value of exports in the quarter under review was N4,693.3 billion, representing a 20.02% growth over the fourth quarter of 2017 and a 56.01% growth compared to the first quarter in 2017.  Likewise, the total import component in the first quarter (N2,518.3 billion) also recorded a growth of 19.22% on a quarter on a quarterly basis and  8.04% year on year.

Exports in the first quarter of 2018 were still dominated by Crude oil, although the proportion of non-crude oil export increased from 17% in the last quarter to approximately 24% in the reviewing quarter.  The value of crude oil export stood at N3,580 billion in the first quarter of 2018, which accounted for 76.3% of the total exports from Nigeria.

Imports Classified by Standard International Trade Classification and Country of Origin

The total value of imports into Nigeria in the first quarter stood at N2,518.3 billion, of which N845 billion imports were mineral fuel (33.6% of the total import) and N669.1 billion were machinery and transport equipment (26.6% of the total import). In the first quarter of 2018, the value of mineral fuel products imports increased by 122.2% compared to the last quarter of 2017. Import of machinery & transport equipment, chemical & related products, and food and live animals decreased marginally from the previous quarter.

Europe and Asia continued to dominate as import destination into Nigeria in the reviewing quarter, both recorded import values of N1,154.70 billion and N989.19 billion respectively. The value of imports from these two continents grew by 35.71% and 17.06% respectively compared to the last quarter in 2017, and they jointly represented more than 85% of the total imports in the first quarter of 2018. The value of imported goods from America (N254.32 billion), however, decreased by 16.12% from the previous quarter (N303.18 billion).

In the first quarter, the top five import destination for Nigeria was China, Netherlands, Belgium, USA, and India. The Import value from the five countries was N530.98 billion or 21.1% (of the total import), N305.80 billion or 12.1%, N266.69 billion or 10.6%, N163.94 billion or 6.5% and N157.92 billion or 6.3% respectively.  China remained the top importing partner for Nigeria in the first quarter.  Import trade from African countries was valued at N94.1 billion (3.7% of the total import) while imports from the region of ECOWAS amounted to N17.8 billion.

Exports Classified by Standard International Trade Classification and Country of Origin

In the reviewing quarter, mineral products accounted for N4,143.31 billion or 88.28% of the total export from Nigeria. This category of export saw a 10.05% growth from the previous quarter, and as in previous quarters, it was dominated by Crude Oil exports.  The second largest component of export was machinery & transport equipment, which recorded N389.74 billion or 8.30% of the total export in the reviewing quarter.  This was a sharp increase from N12.47 billion as recorded in the last quarter of 2017.

Exports by region show similar trends as imports by region. In the first quarter of 2018, Europe and Asia remained the top two export destination continents, which recorded N2,284.29 billion and N1,311.00 billion respectively. Value of exports to these two continents stated above showed a steady growth of 48.47% and 26.81% respectively compared to the previous quarter.

Exports to America dropped by 32.49% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, recording a value of  N879.19 billion or 12.65% of the total exports in the quarter under review. Nigeria exported goods worth N492.3 billion or 10.5% of total export in the during the first quarter to the continent of Africa, among which export to ECOWAS region totalledN195.2 billion.

Exports from Nigeria were mainly sent to Netherlands, India, Spain, USA, and France in the reviewing quarter.  The value of exported commodities to these five countries stated above stood at N963.5 billion or 23.2%, N853.7 billion or 20.6%, N391.7 billion or 9.4%, N386.9 billion or 9.3%, N297.9 billion or 9.3% and N297.9 billion or 7.2% correspondingly.  These top five countries jointly accounted for 61.7% of the total exports in 2018, Q1.

Crude oil export kept dominating exports from Nigeria, which accounted for N3,580 billion or 76.3% of the value of total exports in Q1, 2018.

Export/Imports Products Classified by Sectors Q1, 2018

Agricultural Goods Sector

The total trade of agricultural goods in Q1, 2018 stood at N257.7 billion, in which exports and imports recorded N73.25 billion and N184.49 billion respectively. Exports of agricultural products in the first quarter grew strongly by 63.84% compared to 44.71 billion recorded in the last quarter of 2017, while imports in the reviewing quarter decreased by 18.90% compared to N227.50 billion recorded in the previous quarter. Agricultural products in the quarter under review were mainly exported to Asia (N37.8 billion) and Europe (N32.7 billion).

The major exported agricultural products in Q1, 2018 were Sesamum seeds with the total value standing at N26.6 billion.  Specifically, N8 billion worth of sesamum seeds were exported to China, N6.56 billion to Japan, N6.1 billion to Turkey, N2.2 billion to Vietnam, and N0.8 billion to the Netherlands. The second primary exported agricultural product in Q1 2018 was cocoa beans with a total value of N23.3 billion recorded. This product was exported mainly to the Netherlands (N15 billion), Germany (N1.9 billion), Malaysia (N1.8 billion), Belgium (N1.8 billion) and Indonesia (N1.6 billion).

Other major agricultural products include superior quality raw cocoa beans which were exported to Indonesia (N3.1 billion) and Netherlands (N2.9 billion), cashew nuts which were mainly exported to India (N2.9 billion) and Vietnam (N2.1 billion), and Soybeans which were exported to Italy (N3.5 billion).

In terms of imports, Agricultural products with a total value of N184.5 billion were imported into Nigeria in Q1, 2018, which was a decrease of 18.9% compared to N227.5 billion imported in Q4, 2017, and a decline of 5.9% compared to the corresponding quarter in the last year.

Major imported agricultural products in Q1, 2018 include durum wheat from the United States, Canada, Russia, Latvia and Czech with values of N13.1 billion, N8.7 billion, N7.4 billion, N6.9 billion and N4.8 billion respectively. Other agricultural products such as mackerel were imported from Japan, Ireland, Netherlands, China and Russia which were valued at N5.9 billion, N2.1 billion, N1.7 billion, N1.6 billion and N1.5 billion respectively. Herrings, another major agricultural import was mainly imported from Netherlands, Russia, and China and their values recorded N6.4 billion, N2.7 billion and N1.0 billion respectively. During the reviewing period, N7.0 billion of crude palm oil was imported from Italy and N0.9 billion from Indonesia.

Solid Minerals Sector

The total value of solid minerals trade recorded in Q1, 2018 was N39.6 billion, accounting for 0.55% of the total trade. The value of exported solid minerals stood at N26.9 billion while the imported solid minerals stood at N12.6 billion.

In the first quarter, Nigeria exported N13.4 billion of Naphthalene to the United States and N4.5 billion to Netherlands. This was followed by Zinc Ores and concentrates of N2.4 billion to China.  The value of exported cement to Togo and Ghana stood at N1.8 billion and N0.4 billion respectively. Lead ores were exported to South Korea and China to the tune of 0.38 billion and N0.3 billion respectively.

During the first quarter of 2018, the value of imported solid mineral goods declined by 17.3% compared to the value recorded in the previous quarter, while it increased marginally by 3.7% compared to the value recorded in the same quarter of 2017. Other solid mineral imports in the first quarter were Plasters of calcined gypsum, imported from Turkey with a value of (N2.5 billion), Tunisia (N0.6 billion), Egypt (N0.3 billion) and China (N0.1 billion). Crude salt was imported mainly from Brazil and Namibia with values in the first quarter  N2.1 billion and N1.5 billion from the two respective countries.  Gypsum, other compressed salts, and hydraulic cement were imported from Spain, China, and the Netherlands with values worth N1.4 billion, N0.5 billion and N0.3 billion respectively.

Manufactured Goods Sector

The total trade of manufactured goods stood at N1624.4 billion in Q1, 2018 accounting for 22.52% of total trade. In the reviewing period, the value of exported manufactured goods from Nigeria recorded N434.4 billion (9.26% of total exports), representing a 684.1% growth from the last quarter of 2017. The drivers of the strong growth in manufactured goods export were polyethylene, cigarettes containing tobacco, stuffed pasta, and waters (included mineral and aerated).

The top exported manufacturing good in Q1 was polyethylene, which was mainly exported to China, Brazil and Vietnam with values of N4.0 billion, N2.9 billion and N1.9 billion respectively.  N2.1 billion worth of cigarettes were exported to Ivory Coast, followed by N2.0 billion to the Niger Republic and N1.1 billion to the Guinea Republic.  Stuffed pasta valued atN1.9 billion and waters (including mineral and aerated) valued atN1.3 billion were exported to Ghana in the first quarter of 2018.

The total value of imported manufactured goods into Nigeria in the first quarter of 2018 was N1.190 billion, or 47.25% of total imports.  This figure was 1.65% less than the value recorded in the previous quarter, but 12.1% higher than the value recorded in the same quarter of 2017.

During the quarter, Nigeria imported N 24.3 billion worth of motorcycles from India and N 14.0 billion from China. A total of N29.0 billion worth of Herbicides were imported from China, and N1.7 billion from India. Besides motorcycles and herbicides, Nigeria imported used vehicles to the tune of N21.8 billion from the United States, N1.8 billion from the United Arab Emirates and N1.0 billion from Canada.

Raw Material Goods Sector

The total value of raw material trade in Q1, 2018 stood at N317.5 billion representing 4.4% of the total trade. In the reviewing quarter, raw material goods exported from Nigeria was valued at N32.7 billion in total, accounting for 0.7% of the total export in the quarter. Exports in this sector dropped by 13.6% over the last quarter of 2018, however, increased by 47.7% compared to the first quarter in 2017.

During the quarter, Nigeria exported Urea valued at N11.2 billion, N2.9 billion and N2.1 billion to Brazil, the United States, and Canada respectively. Natural Rubber was exported to France (N0.9 billion), Spain (N0.7 billion), Italy (N0.4 billion), Germany (N0.3 billion) and Lithuania (N 0.3 billion). Other raw materials including leather further prep after tanning and tanned or crust hides and skins without wool were exported to countries including Italy, India, Spain, China, Hong Kong, Portugal and the United States.

Raw material imports recorded N284.8 billion in the reviewing quarter, which is a 1.93% marginal increase from the last quarter of 2017 and a 9.9%  growth from the first quarter of 2017. Sugar cane from Brazil which was valued at N46.7 billion was the largest component of raw material import in the quarter, followed by tobacco from Brazil (N6.0 billion), India (N5.0 billion) and Germany (N1.7 billion). Other imports include mixtures of odoriferous substances mainly from Ireland (N7.1 billion), other films of a width exceeding 35mm from Malaysia (N8.8 billion), and minerals and chemical fertilizers mainly from United Arab Emirates (N4.1 billion) and Morocco (N4.0 billion).

Trade Intensity in Q1 2018

Export Intensity Index with Five Major Trading Partners

The export intensity index compares the share of exports to each country in Nigeria’s total exports, with the share of world exports going to that country, and therefore gives a measure of the importance of that country to Nigeria as an export destination. A higher number denotes a stronger relationship, and an index of one indicates that exports to that country are what would be expected given global trade patterns.

The export intensity index of Nigeria in Q1, 2018 indicates a strong export relationship between Nigeria and the Netherlands, with export intensities of 3.38, 5.88, and 1.33 in January, February, and March respectively. India, the second leading export partner to Nigeria during the quarter, recording 4.10, 4.44 and 3.52 export intensity in the first three months of the year respectively. Spain also recorded relatively high export intensity for January (3.38), February (2.03) and March (1.66). The United States and France both had export intensities less than 1.0 during the first three months of the year except in February when France recorded an export intensity of 1.18.

Import Intensity Index with five Major Trading Partners

During the reviewing quarter, Netherlands, Belgium, and India showed relatively high import intensities among Nigeria’s top five import partners. All the five import partners showed higher import intensity in the first two months than March.

The Netherlands recorded 2.28, 2.86 and 0.79 import intensities in January, February and March respectively, and Belgium recorded 3.41, 2.95 and 1.19 in the corresponding months. Likewise, the import intensity of India recorded 2.80, 2.64 and 1.73 for the first three months of the year. China and the United States, although being Nigeria’s top import partners, showed relatively low import intensity (compared to the Netherlands, Belgium, and India) in the first quarter, and the intensity tended to decrease from January to March.

Trade by Mode of Transport

In Q1, 2018, water remained the most popular mode of transport for exporting goods from Nigeria. The commodities transported by water accounted for N4,672.4 billion or 99.6% of the total export in this quarter.  The goods exported through road accounted for N7.0 billion, and goods exported by air recorded N4.2 billion. Other means of transport for export accounted for N9.7 billion in total during the first quarter of 2018.

Likewise, water is also the major mode of transport for importing goods into Nigeria. A total value of N2,360.2 billion worth of commodities was imported by this mode of transportation, representing 93.7% of total imports in the reviewing quarter.  Other modes of transport for import including road transport and air transport recorded N16.2 billion (0.6% of the total imports) and N141.5 billion (5.6% of the total imports) respectively.

Trade by Custom Ports and Post

The leading port of operation during the quarter was Apapa Port, through which N4,181.6 billion of commodities (89.1% of the total export) were exported in the first quarter of 2018. The next leading port of operation during the quarter was Port Harcourt with N374.4 billion of goods or 7.98%  exported from there. Commodities of N53.4billion exited the country through Tin Can Island.

Apapa Port was also the leading Port of operation for imports in the first quarter, receiving a value of N1,440.7 billion or 57.2% of total imports from other countries.  The second leading port for commodity imports into Nigeria was Tin Can Island, through which N485.7 billion worth of goods (19.29% of the total import) were shipped into the country. Other active ports of operation were Port Harcourt and Muhammed Murtala cargo with N148.6 billion and N103.2 billion imported goods recorded respectively in the first quarter.

Click Here to Download Q1 2018 Foreign Trade Statistics in Goods (PDF) Report

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