Egypt’s non-petroleum exports increased by three percent during the past eight months in comparison to the same period the year before, stated the report on non-petroleum foreign trade indices published by the Egyptian General Organisation for Export and Import Control and released on Wednesday.
Non-petroleum exports recorded $17.65 billion during the first eight months of 2019, up from $16.612 billion during the same period in 2018.
The rise resulted in a decrease of $80 million in the trade balance deficit during the mentioned period.
Three export sectors achieved notable growth, including food products, with exports in this sector increasing by eight percent, recording $2.3 billion, up from $1.888 billion during the same period of 2018, said the report.
Exports of the agricultural crops sector also increased by eight percent, recording $1.763 billion in the same period, up from $1.626 billion, while exports of the garments sector were raised by six percent, recording $1.105 billion, up from $1.43 billion, according to the report.
The Ministry of Trade and Industry aims to reduce imports that have a domestic parallel, and substitute imported products for domestically produced one. The plan has worked thus far: six sectors have witnessed a notable decrease in their exports during the past eight months, stated the report.
Imports in the furniture sector have decreased by 61 percent in the past eight months, recording $345 million, down from $883 million during the same period of 2018. Imports of books and artistic works also decreased by 24 percent, reaching $19 million, down from $25 million in 2018. Construction material imports decreased by 11 percent, recording $6.17 billion, down from $6.799 billion.
Likewise, chemical products imports fell by four percent, reaching $5.48 billion, down from $5.706 billion. Leather products imports declined by three percent, reaching $114 million, down from $118 million. Food products imports decreased by one percent, reaching $3.727 billion, down from $3.747 billion, according to the report.
Five countries, the report stated, received 34 percent of Egypt's exports. These are the US with exports worth $1.462 billion, the UAE $1.26 billion, Saudi Arabia $1.156 billion, Turkey $1.93 billion, and Italy $896 million.
Five countries exported to the Egyptian market 41.5 percent of its imports. These are China with imports worth $7.196 billion, the US $3.39 billion, Germany $2.451 billion, Italy $2.267 billion, and Russia $1.889 billion.