Manufacturing exports overtake gold: BoT

The fall in global prices for gold is creating new dimensions in the measurement of most important sectors of Tanzania’s economy with manufacturing ranking high on the seesaw.

During the days (until 2011) when gold dominated Tanzania’s exports, the bright yellow metal used to account for 60 per cent of the country’s share of non-traditional export products.

According to Bank of Tanzania’s (BoT’s) classifications, apart from gold, the list of non-traditional exports include other minerals, horticultural products, edible vegetables, oil seeds, fish and its products, re-exports and other exports.

Until 2011 and early 2012, gold was a dominant factor in this category of exports while manufactured products accounted for about 20 per cent while all the other products in this category accounted for the remaining 20 per cent.

But according to the BoT’s Monthly Economic Review (MER) for November 2014, which covers the year to October 2014, manufactured exports have now outshone gold to contribute 35.3 per cent to the total value of non-traditional exports.

“Export of manufactured goods increased by 35.5 per cent to $1.371 billion…. Gold - which has been dominant in the non-traditional export - recorded a decline following a decrease in both volume and price,” reads a statement in the BoT’s November 2014 MER. 

Tanzania exports edible oil, textile apparels, plastic goods, fertilizers and paper products among others to neighboring countries and beyond.

Gold exports earned Tanzania a total of $1.352 billion during the year to October 2014.

Prices of the bright yellow metal have gone down tremendously during the past two years from as high as $1800 per ounce to settle within the range of $1200 to $1230 per ounce.

In Asian markets yesterday, gold was at $1,210.89 an ounce, compared with $1,196.40 on Monday.
Source: The Citizen, reported by Samuel Kamndaya from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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