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Walvis Bay Harbour Drives Namibia’s Trade Growth with N$9 Billion in April Transactions

In April 2024, Walvis Bay Harbour solidified its status as Namibia’s principal trade gateway by handling an impressive N$9 billion in trade, according to the latest data from the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA). The harbour managed N$3.8 billion in exports and N$5.2 billion in imports, outpacing other ports in the country and highlighting its critical role in Namibia’s trade infrastructure.

The NSA’s Trade Statistics Bulletin revealed that Namibia’s total exports for the month amounted to N$9.5 billion. This figure signifies a 16.3% increase from March 2024’s N$8.2 billion and a remarkable 26.1% rise compared to April 2023. These gains illustrate the strengthening of Namibia’s export sector, driven by the mining, agriculture, and fisheries industries. On the other hand, imports for April reached N$12.6 billion, a slight decrease of 1.3% from March 2024 but a substantial 44% increase from April 2023’s N$8.8 billion. This increase underscores the robust demand for imported goods, reflecting economic growth and increased consumer activity within the country. Consequently, Namibia recorded a trade deficit of N$3.1 billion for April.

Comparative data from other trade points showed varying levels of activity. Eros Airport, for instance, recorded exports worth N$1,895 million against imports of N$166 million, highlighting a strong export bias. Hosea Kutako International Airport showed a more balanced trade flow with N$794 million in exports and N$687 million in imports. Meanwhile, the Ariamsvlei border post saw exports of N$330 million, significantly lower than its imports of N$1.9 billion, and the Trans Kalahari border post recorded N$740 million in exports against N$2.1 billion in imports. Katima Mulilo border post displayed strong export performance with N$1.4 billion in exports compared to N$422 million in imports. In contrast, Oshikango border post had minimal export activity at N$58 million and no imports.

At the Ngoma border post, exports were valued at N$93 million, with imports of N$44 million, indicating a dominant export activity. The Noordoewer border post registered N$212 million in exports against N$1 billion in imports, showing significant import predominance. Lüderitz Harbour contributed N$164 million in exports and N$357 million in imports, reflecting a higher volume of imports over exports.

South Africa emerged as Namibia’s largest export destination, accounting for 17.6% of total exports, followed closely by China at 16.9%. Other significant export markets included Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Zambia. On the import side, South Africa dominated with 34.8% of total imports, followed by China at 9.2%, with Peru, Oman, and Germany also being key import partners.

Transportation modes were crucial in facilitating trade. Sea transport handled 41.6% of total exports, road transport accounted for 30.1%, and air transport made up 28.3%. For imports, road transport was the most utilized, accounting for 48.9% of total imports, followed by sea transport at 44.2%, and air transport at 6.9%. In April 2024, Namibia exported goods worth N$4 billion via sea, primarily consisting of uranium, fish, and copper. Road exports included salts, fish, and petroleum oils, while air transport handled exports of precious stones, non-monetary gold, and crustaceans.

Sea imports in April included petroleum oils, copper ores, and rotating electric plants, while road imports featured nickel ores, motor vehicles, and alcoholic beverages, valued at N$6.2 billion. This diverse import portfolio underscores the critical role of various transportation modes in supporting Namibia’s economic activities and growth.

Walvis Bay Harbour’s handling of N$9 billion in trade in April 2024 exemplifies its pivotal role in Namibia’s economy. The harbour’s performance, coupled with strategic trade policies and infrastructure investments, underscores its importance as a central hub for both imports and exports, driving Namibia’s trade growth and economic prosperity.

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