Export Commodities

Export Trade Continues to Under Perform

By Sisay Sahlu

ADDIS ABEBA – Export trade is still underperforming, revealed data from the Ministry of Trade and Industry after it has failed to hit the ten-month target set for the 2018/19 fiscal year.

During the period, Ethiopia has earned only 2.1 billion USD, according to a statement The Daily Monitor obtained from the ministry. The government’s target for the period has been 3.5 billion USD.

The data shows the country achieved to generate only 61 percent of its target for commodities exported in the stated period.

Compared to a similar period of the previous budget year, the earning nosedived by 8.3 percent or 196.4 million USD, it said.

The Ministry’s statement stated that Eucalyptus, Tantalum, and Khat are among the top-performing commodities and generated substantial amounts of revenue.

The statement failed to disclose how much they generate, though.

Coffee together with Oilseeds, electricity textile, flower, tea, fruit, and vegetable was able to attain a little bit more than 50 percent the target that the nation set for the period.

Gold, on the other hand, is among poorly performing commodities together with milk, spices, food and beverage, fish, live animals, electronics, and construction materials.

Low and volatile prices in global commodity market for export commodities, and poor performance of the manufacturing sector, among others, have been attributed as a reason for the poor performance of export.

The ministry also blamed the increasing contraband trade for underperforming mineral export trade for the poor export performance.

This has become a great concern, it said adding, that minerals are still smuggled into the neighboring countries affecting its contribution to the economy substantially.

Reports say, in the first six months of the 2018/19 FY, the nation achieved only 5% of its target from mining export, receiving only 30 million USD.