The on-going reforms in the power sector and the growing development of the non-oil potentials of the country may raise Nigeria’s trade volume to about N35.05 trillion by the end of this year, according to a report by FSDH Research.
The report also noted that within the year, the imports to the country are expected to rise, but may drop afterwards as the reforms take full effect.
States are projected to spendN5.377 trillion on imports in 2013, a drop from the expected 2012 figure of N5.661 trillion, while exports will increase to N28.675 trillion this from the N24.300 trillion last year.
The report estimated the balance of trade for 2013 at N23.297 trillion, while trade is expected to rise to N52.381 trillion by 2017.
“Within the next three years, imports may increase as a result of the importation of equipment that will be required in the power sector of the Nigerian economy. After this period, we expect imports to drop because of the following factors: local capacity in the cement sector and increase on import duties on some goods where Nigeria has comparative advantage”, the report stated.
The report further stated: “However, the diversification strategy of the federal government from oil to non-oil, efforts to improve infrastructure in the country to make the country’s goods competitive and the improvement in the global economic activities should boost Nigeria’s exports during the forecast period.”
The latest foreign trade statistics released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) for the period ended September 2012 shows that the value of the country’s merchandise trade has been on a progressive increase in the last few years with exports dominating the total trade at an average of 70.60 per cent of the total trade.
FSDH Research explained: “This means that Nigeria has a trade surplus. In a similar pattern, oil dominates the exports at an average of 70.37 per cent. The total trade increased from N19.66trn in 2010 to N29.33 trillion in 2011. As at September 2012 the value of total trade stood at N20.89 trillion.”
It added: “Looking at Nigeria’s export partners, United States is on top of the list followed by Brazil and closely followed by China. On the other hand, China is Nigeria’s number one import partner followed by the United States, while India occupies the third position.”
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