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Tunisia: trade deficit narrows slightly to 2.3 billion dinars at end of February

The trade deficit stood at 2,358 million dinars at the end of February 2023, compared to a deficit of 2,553 million dinars in the first two months of 2022.

Consequently, the coverage rate increased by 3.1 percentage points compared to the end of February of the previous year, reaching 81%, according to data published by the National Institute of Statistics (INS).

In this regard, Tunisia’s foreign trade at current prices posted a rise of 11.6% in exports during the first two months of 2023, against 31.6% during the same period in 2022 to 10,044 million dinars, from 8,999 million at the end of February 2022.

Imports grew by 7.4% to 12,402 million dinars, from 11,553 million during the two months of 2022.

The increase in exports observed in the two months of 2023 concerned the food industry (+17.1%), textiles, clothing and leather (+17.8%) and mechanical and electrical industries (+23.7%), while exports of the energy sector fell by 42.8% and those of mines, phosphates and derivatives by 23.9%.

The growth in imports was due to the rise in imports of energy products (+34.7%), capital goods (+4%), consumer goods (+5.7%) and raw materials and semi-finished goods (+0.9%).

Moreover, the INS points out that the trade deficit is mainly due to the deficit recorded with certain countries, such as China (1,179 million dinars), Turkey (471.7 million dinars), Algeria (974.5 million dinars), Russia (401.2 million dinars), Ukraine (288.6 million dinars), Egypt (242 million dinars) and Greece (116.4 million dinars).

On the other hand, the balance of trade in goods recorded a surplus with other countries, mainly France (958.6 million dinars), Germany (591.8 million dinars), Italy (220.2 million dinars) and Libya (391.2 million dinars).

The deficit of the trade balance excluding energy went down to 665.1 million dinars and the deficit of the energy balance stood at 1,693 million dinars (71.8% of the total deficit) against 779.3 million dinars in the two months of 2022.


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