Posted: Tuesday, July 5, 2022. 4:41 pm CST.
By Benjamin Flowers: For the first five months of 2022, Belize’s expenditure on imports was up by more than $300 million when compared to the same period last year and the Statistical Institute of Belize says that the high cost of fuel is one of the major causes.
The SIB’s latest data says that total imports from January-May 2022, totaled $1.1 billion; a total increase of $339 million (44.6 percent).
The mineral fuels and lubricants category was up by a whopping 107 percent, from $92.2 million to $178.4 million. Of those imports gasoline saw the most significant increase in import expenditure, moving from $24.5 million in 2021 to $48.3 million this year. Kerosene went up from $4.6 million to $22.4 million; Bunker C fuel oil, which is used for marine purposes, went up from $0.7 million to $7.7 million; and Propane went from $7.1 million to $13.1 million.
The SIB also noted that diesel and premium fuel went up from $29.4 million and $7.1 million respectively to $35.3 million and $13.3 million.
Other categories that saw increases in import expenditures include Machinery and Transport Equipment, up by 52.7 percent ($76.4 million); Commercial Free Zones, up by 63.8 percent ($60.9 million); Manufactured Goods and Other Manufactures, up by 29.5 percent from ($53 million); Chemical Products up $49.7 percent from ($42 million); Food and live animals, up 19.6 percent ($19 million); and Designated Processing Areas, up 42.2 percent ($5.7 million).
Notably, beer imports were down by 45 percent ($16.7 million).
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