ImportLast night we told you about the December 2017 Consumer Price Index figures released by the Statistical Institute of Belize which show that the cost of living remained high. Tonight we bring to you the import and export figures for the last month of 2017.

We first take a look at the exportation figures. Data gathered by the SIB demonstrate that there was a recorded decline in the total value of domestic exports for December 2017. Figures show that it fell by $2.2 million, decreasing from $17.9 million in 2016 to $15.7 million this year. (Insert Figure 3)

The most substantial decline of all major exports was seen in commodities such as marine products, which shrank by $2.5 million from $5.7 million to $3.2 million, mainly attributed to a fall in the sale of shrimp. Citrus products also saw a sharp decrease from $3.7 million to $2.1 million, due to a reduction in orange concentrate sales.

While the exportation of bananas recorded a growth of $1.1 million, from $5.1 million to $6.2 million… The largest increase in export revenues came from other exportation products, particularly animal feed which rose from $0.1 million in 2016 to $2.1 million in 2017. Minimal sugar sales was documented for the month of December, while no crude petroleum exports were recorded.

Merchandise exports for 2017 amounted to $445.6 million, recording a 10.9 percent or $43.7 million as opposed to 2016, which stood at $401.9 million.

(Insert Figure 3) For 2017 sugar accounted for a third of Belize’s total exports. Figures show that revenues for sugar rose by 43.6 percent from $103.1 million to over $148 million. While exported quantities for sugar rose by almost 27 percent, this increase also reflected more favourable world market prices for sugar during the year.

Bananas recorded a 17 percent increase as revenues went up by $11.9 million, rising from $69.9 million to $81.8 million. Exports of marine products fell slightly from $41.9 million to $40.1 million, as greater sales of lobster tails and lobster meat partially offset the drop in shrimp and conch exports. Citrus exports also declined sharply by $19.6 million, from $100.1 million to $80.5 million.

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