Zambia records trade surplus of K117m

ZAMBIA has recorded a trade surplus of K117. 2 million in July compared to K43.8 million recorded last year in June.

And the annual inflation rate, as measured by the all items consumers prices index for August has remained at eight per cent.

Central Statistical Office (CSO) director John Kalumbi said that Zambia exported more in July this year than it imported in nominal terms.

“The highest trade surplus valued at K295.3 million was recorded in January 2014 and the lowest was a trade surplus in April 2014, at K29.5 million,” he said.

Speaking at a Press briefing in Lusaka yesterday, Mr Kalumbi said Zambia’s major export products in July were from the intermediate goods category, accounting for 84.9 per cent.

He said other exports were from the consumer goods, raw materials and capital goods categories which collectively accounted for 15.1 per cent of total exports in July.

That implies that between June and July, Zambia has been a net exporter of intermediate goods, mainly metals and their articles, accounting for an average of 83.9 per cent of the total exports.

Mr Kalimbi said there has been increase in the total value of metal export from K3, 562.1 million in June to K4,185.5 million in July 2014 and the overall contribution of metals and their products to the total export earnings in July and June 2014 averaged 76.8 per cent.

He said Zambia’s major export destination was Switzerland, which accounted for 54.4 per cent and that major export product to that country were cathodes and sections of cathodes of refined copper accounting for 94.8 per cent.

China was the second major destination of Zambia’s exports accounting for 13.0 per cent and that major export product to that country was copper blisters.

He said the third major export destination was Democratic Republic Congo(DRC) which accounted for 6.7 per cent with products such as sulphuric acid, oluem in bulk, accounting for 23 per cent.

And Mr Kalumbi said the annual inflation rate has remained at eight per cent and that meant on average, prices increased by eight per cent between August 2013 and August 2014. Mr Kalumbi said between August 2013 and August 2014, the annual rate of inflation increased for food and non-alcoholic beverage; clothing and footwear; and recreation and culture.

“The annual rate of inflation decreased for alcoholic beverage and tobacco; housing; water; electricity; gas and other fuels; health; transport; education restaurant and hotel; and miscellaneous goods and services,” he said. He said out of the total percentage of annual inflation rate recorded in August in 2014, food and non-alcoholic beverage products accounted for 3.6 percentage point, while non-food products accounted for a total of 4.4 percentage points.

The annual food inflation rate for the August 2014 was recorded at seven percent, which indicates that an increase of 0.1 percentage point compared to 6.9 percent recorded in July 2014.

Mr Kalumbi said the annual inflation rate for non-food decreased by 0.1 percentage point from 9.2 per cent in July this year to 9.1 percentage in August.

He said the total monthly inflation rate decreased from .8 per cent recorded in July to 0.7 per cent recorded in August.

“This indicates a decrease of 0.1 percentage points. The monthly food rate for August  was recorded at 0.9 per cent compared to -0.1 per cent recorded in July while the monthly non-food inflation rate for August was recorded at 0.4 per cent compared to 1.6 per cent recorded in July,” said Mr Kalumbi