(Ecofin Agency) - Africa remains WAEMU’s best commercial partner at the end of Q2, 2018, Ecofin Agency learned from official figures. Even though it dropped by 8% on a year-to-year basis, the trade surplus between the union and its main African partners was estimated at CFA365.3 billion.
There is namely a positive balance of CFA260.5 billion with South Africa thanks to gold exported by Mali and Burkina Faso. With the other ECOWAS countries that are not part of the WAEMU, the positive balance was CAF138.9 billion. Nigeria and Ghana are particular markets for the region with trade surplus estimated at CA38.4 billion and CFA44.2 billion respectively.
The most important trade deficit registered by WAEMU during the period under review was with China. Indeed, this partner received less than 2% of exports from West Africa but supplied 15% of the sub-region’s imports. This resulted in a trade deficit estimated at CFA567 billion. Globally, with Asia, the sub-region’s trade deficit was CFA606 billion during the period under review.
Let’s note that WAEMU’s overall negative balance rose during Q2, 2018 to reach CFA421 billion against CFA286.1 billion by the same period last year.
The figures demonstrate that the region will save enough if it produces more of its foods since they constitute the larger part of imports with an invoice of CFA1,121 billion.