Research Document: NESG 2022 FOREIGN TRADE ALERT

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Posted Mon, Mar 13, 2023 11:29 AM

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External trade was flat, while the trade balance reverted to surplus in 2022 Q4 Nigeria’s external trade value stood at N11.7 trillion in the fourth quarter of 2022, the same as in the corresponding period of 2021. Meanwhile, the value of external trade in 2022Q4 represents a fourth consecutive quarterly decline in the year (see Figure 1). Despite this, the external trade value for the full year (FY) 2022 stood higher at N52.4 trillion, relative to its level in 2021 (N39.8 trillion). NESG 2022 FOREIGN TRADE ALERT March 2023 See Figure 1: Total External Trade (N’trillion)

The value of merchandise exports sharply outpaced the merchandise import value (see Figure 2), resulting in a trade surplus of N996.8 billion in 2022Q4. This represents a remarkable departure from the trade deficit of N174 billion and N409.4 billion recorded in 2021Q4 and 2022Q3, respectively (see Figure 3). The improved trade balance position in 2022Q4 could be attributed to enhanced export earnings and lower import bills. Moreover, the trade balance transitioned from a deficit of N1.9 trillion in 2021 to a surplus of N1.2 trillion in FY’2022.

A rise in Oil Exports drove Export Earnings in 2022Q4. The total value of goods exported increased by 10.3 percent (year-on-year) to N6.4 trillion in 2022Q4 from N5.8 trillion in 2021Q4 (see Figure 2). Similarly, on a quarter-on-quarter basis, the export value represents an 8.5 percent rise compared to its level in 2022Q3 (N5.9 trillion).

Cumulatively, total exports jumped to N26.8 trillion in FY'2022 from N18.9 trillion in 2021. Furthermore, the year-on-year increase in merchandise export receipts in 2022Q4 was driven by the rise in oil exports. Oil exports – which accounted for 87.5 percent of total export earnings in 2022Q4 – rose by 14.3 percent to N5.6 trillion in 2022Q4 from N4.9 trillion in 2021Q4. Similarly, the value of oil exports was slightly higher than its level in 2022Q3 (N5.5 trillion). This could be partly due to an improvement in the average domestic crude oil production from 1.2 million barrels/day in 2022Q3 to 1.3 million barrels/day in 2022Q4.

However, non-oil exports – which accounted for 12.5 percent of total export earnings - fell by 9.7 percent to N732.2 billion in 2022Q4 from N810.9 billion in 2021Q4 (see Table 1). The sharp decline in non-oil exports – which exclude petrochemicals and oil-related items – was due to a drop in the sales proceeds from raw materials and manufacturing products, which accounted for 73.8 percent of non-oil export receipts in 2022 Q4.

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