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Overall balance of payment improves

THE annual overall balance of payments improved to a surplus of 763.8 million US dollars in the year ending March, compared to a deficit of 648.8 million US dollars in the corresponding period in 2019.

However, the Bank of Tanzania monthly economic review for April  shows that the external sector of the economy is expected to experience challenges induced by Covid-19, particularly in 2020.

The current account deficit improved to 919.3 million US dollars in the year ending March from a deficit of 1,634.4 million US dollars in corresponding period while on month-to month, the deficit was 30.8 million US dollars in March compared with 227.1 million US dollars in the corresponding period in 2019.

Nevertheless, in March services receipts, which include earnings from tourism, declined by 26.4 per cent to 232.4 million US dollars, partly due to decline in tourist arrivals associated with measures adopted to limit the spread of Covid-19.  

During the period under review, exports of goods and services amounted to 9,951.1 million US dollars in the year ending March  compared with 8,747.1 million US dollars in March 2019, largely owing to increase in exports of traditional crops.

On monthly basis, exports amounted to 667.6 million US dollars in March, higher than 652.4 million US dollars in March 2019.

However, exports performance was lower when compared with 802.3 million US dollars in February, associated with relatively modest service receipts from tourism related activities.

Much of the decline in service receipts occurred in travel earnings on account of a decrease in tourist arrivals following travel restrictions and lockdowns due to Covid-19. 

Traditional goods export rose significantly to 1,017.3 million US dollars in the year ending March from 569.2 million US dollars in the corresponding period in 2019, as all traditional goods exports increased except coffee, tea and tobacco.

Cashew nuts and sisal exports rose on account of both volume and prices effects. Increase in export of cotton and cloves was on account of volume, driven by good weather.

The export of coffee, tea and tobacco decreased on account of both volume and price effects.

On month-to-month basis, traditional exports amounted to 64.3 million US dollars in March compared with 30.3 million US dollars in March 2019.

Conversely, traditional exports were lower compared to 92.7 million US dollars in February associated with seasonality factors. 

The exports of non-traditional goods amounted to 4,170.8 million US dollars in the year ending March compared with 3,607.5 million US dollars in the corresponding period in 2019.

All major categories of non-traditional export increased, except manufactured goods, and fish and fish products. Gold which accounted for 55.7 per cent of non-traditional exports, increased by 37.9 per cent to 2,324.0 million US dollars, driven by volume and price.

On month-to-month basis, non-traditional export of goods amounted to 331.4 million in March  compared with 275.8 million US dollars in March 2019 and 299.0 million US dollars in February 2020, reflecting resilience to Covid-19 related challenges.

TANZANIAN economists have received the news of the ...

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Author: DAILY NEWS Reporter

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