By Cecilia Ologunagba
Abuja – The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), said the country recorded a total trade value of N32.26 trillion year-on-year in 2018, representing 39.3 per cent increase over the corresponding period in 2017.
The trade value for 2017 stood at N23.16 trillion.
The NBS said this in Foreign Trade in Goods Statistics for Fourth Quarter of 2018 posted on its website.
The bureau said the volume of total merchandise trade in 2018 was the highest recorded since 2014, nearly double pre-recession levels.
The Bureau said during the fourth quarter of 2018, total merchandise trade stood at N8.60 trillion compared to its value of N9.06 trillion recorded in third quarter of the year.
It said the total export component of the trade recorded at N5.02 trillion, represented an increase of 3.5 per cent over third quarter 2018 and 28.5 per cent over fourth quarter 2017.
Meanwhile the bureau said the import component stood at N3.58 trillion in fourth quarters 2018.
The figure showed a drop of N631.6 billion or 15.0 per cent compared to third quarter, 2018 but an increase of 69.6 per cent when compared with the corresponding quarter in 2017.
However, it said the increase in export value and decrease in import value (relative to third quarter 2018) resulted in a favourable trade balance of N1441 billion, or 125.5 per cent over the preceding quarter.
According to the report, crude oil export has been the main stay of the economy; it accounted for the largest share of total exports (84.2 per cent) in the fourth quarter of 2018 at N4.228 billion.
Non-oil products accounted for 4.6 per cent of total exports while other oil products accounted for 11.2 per cent of total exports in the quarter under review.
The report said that the value of crude oil exports in the fourth quarter, 2018 was 1.98 per cent higher than in third quarter 2018 and 29.95 per cent higher than in fourth quarter 2017.
It said the value of other oil products exports increased by 3.5 per cent in fourth quarter 2018 when compared with third quarter 2018 and 15.99 per cent compared to fourth quarter 2017.
Also, the value of manufactured goods exports rose by 14.97 per cent in fourth quarter 2018 when compared with the value recorded in third quarter 2018 but decreased 36.6 per cent against the corresponding quarter in 2017.
It, however, said that the exports of energy goods increased in value by 6.1 per cent in fourth quarter 2018 compared to third quarter 2018 and by 12.7 per cent when compared with fourth quarter 2017.
Meanwhile, the bureau said the value of total exports in fourth quarter 2018 increased by 3.52 per cent against the level recorded in third quarter 2018 and 28.46 per cent higher than its value in fourth quarter 2017.
India, Spain, France, South Africa and the Netherlands were the country’s major export trading partners in the quarter under review while China, US, Netherlands, India and Belgium were the major import trading partners.