Nigeria’s trade report for two quarters of 2020 has given an insight into the items the country spent most of its foreign exchange on as COVID-19 hammered the nation’s economy and shut businesses.
The report by the National Trade Negotiation Office shows that for the second and third quarters of last year, the country imported mostly identical items, suggesting the trend continued for the entire year.
Nigeria relies heavily on importation, and buys a reasonable amount of even food from other countries. It exports mostly crude oil and gas.
The value of Nigeria merchandise trade in the second quarter stood at N6.2 trillion, lower by 27.30 per cent than what was achieved between January and March when COVID-19 lockdown had not taken a hold.
Of that figure, Nigeria only exported goods worth N2.2 trillion, almost half of what it sold the previous quarter, leaving a trade deficit of N1.8 trillion.
The country imported the most from China, United States and India in the second quarter of 2020. Others are India, Netherlands, Germany, Brazil, Russia, South Korea, United Kingdom and Italy.
For the second quarter, between April and June, here are the 10 most imported items:
1. Used vehicles
2. Durum wheat
4. Motor spirit ordinary
5. Herbicides and anti-sprouting products
6. Machines or the reception, conversion and transmission or regeneration of voice, images…
7. Milk and cream in powder
8. Cane sugar meant for sugars refinery
10. Flat/hot rolled iron/steel in coil
The third quarter, between July and September, saw mostly the same items, but with some climbing the table.
Herbicides and anti-sprouting products, machines or the reception, conversion and transmission or regeneration of voice, images, antibiotics and flat/hot rolled iron/steel in coil did not make the first 10 this time. Plumbing items like taps, valves made the list, bringing the total number of items to 11.
Here is the list for Q3.
1. Motor spirit ordinary
2. Durum Wheat
3. Used vehicles
4. Cane sugar
6. Gas oil
7. Milk and cream powder
8. Plumbing parts like taps, valves