Pretoria, 30 April 2012 – The South African Revenue Service (SARS) today releases trade statistics for March 2012 that record a trade deficit of R5.5 billion.
The trade deficit for March 2012 narrowed to R5.5 billion (Surplus of R1 billion in March 2011) from a deficit of R7.5 billion in February 2012, a month-on-month improvement of R2.0 billion. Exports increased by R5.1 billion (9.0%) to R61.3 billion and imports increased by R3.1 billion (4.8%) to R66.8 billion.
The reduced trade deficit of R5.5 billion in March 2012 was mainly due to increased exports of mineral products, products of the chemicals or allied industries and precious and semi-precious stones and decreased imports of animal or vegetable fats and oils and their cleavage products.
The cumulative deficit for 2012 is R26.3 billion compared to a cumulative deficit of R5.1 billion in 2011.
Trade Highlights by Category
- The February to March change (up by 9.0%) in exports of goods reflected changes mainly in:
- Mineral products increased by R3 488 million (25%);
- Products of the chemical or allied industries increased by R 736 million (26%);
- Precious and semi-precious stones and metals increased by R 460 million (4%);
- Base metals and articles thereof decreased by R 490 million (-6%).
- The February to March change (up by 4.8%) in imports of goods reflected changes mainly in:
- Machinery and electrical appliances increased by R1 554 million (12%);
- Mineral products increased by R 679 million (4%);
- Vehicles, aircraft and vessels increased by R 485 million (8%);
- Original equipment components increased by R 282 million (7%);
- Animal or vegetable fats and oils and their cleavage products decreased by R 365 million (-47%)
Trade Highlights by World Zone
The world zone results for February and March 2012 as given below are unaudited.
- Asia The deficit decreased from R 11.5bn in February to R 4.8bn in March 2012. Exports increased by R 4.1bn to R 23.0bn
and imports decreased by R 2.6bn to R 27.8bn.
- Europe The deficit increased from R 5.3bn in February to R 7.1bn in March 2012. Exports decreased by R 0.5bn to R 13.9bn
and imports increased by R 1.2bn to R 21.0bn.
- America The deficit decreased from R 2.2bn in February to R 1.8bn in March 2012. Exports increased by R 1.1bn to R 6.6bn
and imports increased by R 0.8bn to R 8.4bn.
- Africa The surplus decreased from R 5.1bn in February to R 2.3bn in March 2012. Exports increased by R 0.9bn to R 10.6bn
and imports increased by R 3.8bn to R 8.3bn.
- Oceania The deficit decreased from R 0.5bn in February to R 0.4bn in March 2012. Exports decreased by R 0.03bn to R 0.6bn
and imports decreased by R 0.06bn to R 1.0bn.
1.1 SA Trade Release Table