By George Mwangi
Special for Dow Jones Newswires
Tanzania’s current account deficit widened to $962.1 million in the first half of the fiscal year beginning in July from $380.0 million in the year-ago period, in due to an increase in imports of goods, the Bank of Tanzania announced on Saturday.
“The rise in goods imports was dominated by capital goods and intermediate goods, particularly oil,” the bank said in its February monetary policy statement for the 2021-2022 financial year.
Imports of goods and services totaled $6.58 billion in the July-December period, compared to $4.70 billion a year earlier.
“All categories of goods imports increased, in line with the continued recovery of economic activities from the effects of the pandemic,” the bank said.
Oil imports, which accounted for about 21% of merchandise imports, rose 77% to $1.18 billion due to price and volume effects, he said.
Exports of goods and services amounted to $5.74 billion during the period, compared to $4.60 billion a year earlier.
Merchandise exports rose to $3.85 billion, largely on the strength of a strong performance in manufactured goods, horticulture and fish and fishery products, the bank said.
However, gold, which is Tanzania’s main export earner, rose to $1.35 billion from $1.63 billion the previous year due to a lower price. of gold in the global market, consistent with improving global financial markets, the bank said.
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