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SIB: Export revenue down almost 10 percent from January to October

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Posted: Friday, December 11, 2020. 8:17 am CST.

By BBN Staff: Belize’s export revenues have fallen during the first 10 months of 2020, according to the latest External Trade Bulletin issued by the Statistical Institute of Belize.

The SIB’s data, released this week, showed that merchandise exports for the period January to October 2020 totaled just over $325 million, down 9.9 percent  ($35.9 million) when compared to that same period last year, when total domestic exports amounted to $360.9 million.

“Earnings from sugar, crude petroleum, citrus, and marine products all declined markedly over the ten-month period,” the SIB said. “Revenues from sugar exports fell by a considerable $26.1 million, an almost 20 percent drop, from $132.3 million in 2019 to $106.2 million 2020, as exported quantities of sugar decreased by more than one-third during the first ten months of this year.”

Crude oil revenues fell from  $12.9 million to $4.9 million. The SIB also said that crude petroleum revenues fell by 62 percent as only one shipment was sent out in the first ten months of this year, while there were two shipments by that time last year.

Earnings from citrus exports went down by 11 percent or $5.5 million, from $49.4 million in 2019 to $43.9 million in 2020, mainly due to decreased world market prices for orange concentrate. Exports of marine products declined by 8.5 percent or $3 million, from $35.3 million in 2019 to $32.3 million in 2020, as a result of decreased exports of conch, whole lobsters, and lobster meat, despite increased sales of lobster tails over the period.

Despite the overall declines, the SIB noted that some industries had seen some increases in revenue.

“Among all the country’s major commodities, only bananas recorded increased export earnings during the first ten months of this year. Revenues from bananas went up by a respectable 8 percent or $5.5 million, from $67 million in 2019 to $72.5 million in 2020. Among other exports, revenues from molasses rose by $2.5 million, from $8.2 million in 2019 to $10.7 million in 2020, due to improved market prices for this commodity,” the SIB added.

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