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Exports and imports take a dive in February

Posted: Thursday, March 29, 2018. 9:09 a.m. CST.

By BBN Staff: Belize earned less revenue from exports but spent slightly less money on imports for the month of February, according to the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB).

The latest External Trade Bulletin said that the country’s total export earnings for February fell by 11. 6 percent, going from $25.8 million to $22.8 million, when compared to February 2017. The SIB explained that decrease came from huge losses in both banana and marine product exports. Sales of bananas fell by $2 million, from $7.2 million in February of 2017 to $5.2 million in February 2018, while marine exports dropped by $1.5 million, from $4.7 million to $3.2 million.

Citrus exports also diminished by $100,000 from $6.1 million last year to $6 million this year, due to reductions in grapefruit concentrate and orange oil exports for the month. There was a $0.8 million increase in orange concentrate sales.

“Sugar was the only major export to have recorded substantial growth during the month, as earnings from that commodity more than doubled from $1.7 million in February 2017 to $3.5 million in the same month this year,” the SIB said.

Exports to the two major importers of Belizean goods, the United Kingdom and the United States, had noticeable declines, with the UK revenues falling by $2.2 million, from $8.9 million to $6.7 million, and the US sales $2.1 million, from $6.2 million to $4.1 million. There was some growth in the number of exports sent to Mexico, with the earning going up growing from $0.01 million in 2017 to $1.1 million in 2018, due almost entirely to sales of lobster tail, a product which was not exported to Mexico during last February.

For the month of February 2018, Belize spent $136.8 million on imported goods valuing. This represented a 2.6 percent or $3.7 million decreases from the same month last year when imports were valued at over $140.4 million.

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