Belize’s total imports for the month of June 2016 were valued at $168 million, decreasing 11.2 percent or $21.2 million from imports for June 2015, which totaled $189.2 million, this is according to the latest figures released by the Statistical Institute of Belize today.
The report shows that Imports destined for the ‘Machinery and Transport Equipment’, which accounts for more than one fifth of all the country’s imports, was a major factor in the decline for June 2016. This category, which spiked to $47 million in June of last year due to a major purchase of equipment, saw a drop of $11.5 million to $35 million in June 2016.
‘Mineral Fuels and Lubricants’, on the other hand, saw its first monthly increase for this year, rising by $6 million from $13.6 million in June of last year to $20 million for June 2016. This was primarily due to the fact that diesel imports doubled when compared to last June. A shipment of premium gasoline was also received in June 2016, while none was imported during June of 2015.
Merchandise imports for the first half of the year totaled $974.9 million, representing a 2.4 percent or a $23.5 million decrease from the same six month period last year when goods totaling $998.4 million were imported.
Turing over to Domestic exports for June 2016, this totaled $36.8 million, a 30.2 percent or $15.9 million decrease from the $52.7 million recorded in June 2015, with all of Belize’s major commodities declining during the month including sales of marine products which fell by more than half from $6.5 million to $2.8 million, as farm shrimp exports declined markedly.
Sugar earnings fell considerably by $24 million, from $25 million in June 2015 to $1 million in June of this year. This was the main reason for the overall decline in exports recorded during the month and was due to changes in the scheduling of bulk shipments of sugar during this year compared to last year. Sales of marine products fell by more than one half from $6.5 million to under $3 million, while banana exports declined by one third from $9 million to $6 million
For the first six months of the year Merchandise exports for the period January to June 2016 totaled $231.8 million, down $73 million or almost one fourth from the same period last year. As was observed for the month of June, All other major exports recorded declines in earnings for the period. Marine export receipts plunged by almost three fourths, from $51 million in 2015 to $15 million in 2016. Bananas and crude petroleum each saw export earnings fall by about one third during the period, with banana sales dropping by $17 million from $53 million to $35 million, and crude petroleum falling from $18 million to $12 million. Sugar earnings decreased by almost 15 percent from $72 million in the first six months of 2015 to $61 million in 2016.
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