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By: Nghiinomenwa Erastus

Namibia’s small manufacturing sector and dependence have led to the country spending N$34 million on coffins from August last year to the end of August 2021.

The country’s most significant monthly coffin expenditure was N$8 million (23,8%), reflected in August 2021.

The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) August 2021 trade statistics show.

NSA statistician general Alex Shimuafeni explained that coffins imports were pushed up by the number of deaths resulting from the Coronavirus during the last months and others.

“Funeral undertakers experienced a lot of pressure regarding the high demand of services they offer, including the supply of coffins,” he said.

As a result, from August 2020 to August 2021), Namibia imported coffins to a value of N$34 million.

The lowest amount paid on coffins import was slightly more than N$1 million in September 2020.

Namibia’s merchandise trade with the rest of the world during August 2021 surged to N$17,1 billion.

An increase of 27,1% when compared to the level of N$13,4 billion recorded in July 2021.

Moreover, it went up by 3,7% compared to the level of and N$16,5 billion and August 2020, respectively.

Despite an increase in trade activities, Namibia recorded a deficit of N$2,9 billion for August 2021.

Compared to July 2021’s deficit is an improvement on the merchandise account from N$3,5 billion recorded in July 2021.

However, compared to last year, the country did poorly, as it only spent an extra N$1,4 billion obtained in August 2020 on foreign goods than it sold.

International merchandise trade plays a crucial role in economic development as it links producers and consumers located in different countries into a global economic system.

As usual, China emerged as Namibia’s largest market for exports (buyer) value.

Overall Namibian have sold goods worth N$7,1 billion to the rest of the world in August 2021. This was an increase from its July 2021 level of N$5 billion.

However, the 2021 country’s sales for goods could not match the full pandemic time of last year compared to its level of N$7,5 billion in August 2020.

As an extractive country with low-value addition, the government buys ready-to-consume-product from other countries.

Most of the foreign goods consumed locally are from across the Orange River- even for August 2021, South Africa maintained its position as the largest import market for the country.

Compared to what we sold, Namibians, companies, and the government had spent N$10 billion, buying finished products, plus copper and diamonds to re-export.

An increase of 18,5% monthly while on annual basis growth of 12,1% was observed from its August 2020 level of N$8,9 billion.

In terms of what the country most exchanging with the world, NSA highlighted that the composition (top products) has not changed. It is still dominated by raw material (minerals).

Export for August is lead by minerals such as copper, precious stones (diamonds), non-monetary gold, uranium, ores, and concentrates of base metals.

“As usual, fish remained the only non-mineral product among the top five exports,” the NSA team highlighted.

Most of the country’s money was spent on copper, petroleum oils, precious stones (diamonds), motor vehicles (for transportation of persons), and; ores and concentrates of base metals.

Notably, copper featured as the most dominant commodity on both trade flows indicating the vital role the country plays as a central logistics hub for SADC in terms of copper. Email:

Julia Heita

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