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Tunisia: phosphate plagues exports, despite their rise

In its latest report on the evolution of Tunisian foreign trade at the end of December 2018, the National Statistics Institute (INS) indicates that “the increase posted in exports (+ 19.1%) in 2018 concerns the majority of the sectors.

In fact, the export of the agriculture and agri-food industries registered a significant increase of 45.2%, following the rise in Tunisia’s olive oil sales (2,125.0 MD against 1,009.4 MD), dates (744.1 MD vs. 557.6 MD), the manufacturing sector 26.4%, the textile, clothing and leather sector by 18.6%, the sector of mechanical and electrical industries by 14.1% and the energy sector by 13.7%.

In contrast, exports of the mining, phosphates and derivatives “remain down with a rate of 2.7%.

The same source states that “the increase in imports by 20.0% is due to the increase in all sectors.

Thus, energy rose by 39.9%, mines, phosphates and derivatives by 23.6%, raw materials and semi-finished products by 22.5%, capital goods by 15.6% and basic agricultural and food products by 9.7%. Non-energy imports have risen by 17.3%.


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