By: Nghiinomenwa Erastus
The Namibia Statistics Agency imports data for the first quarters of the past five years (2017-21) show that the Valentines Day fever influenced chocolate and flower expenditure.
On average, Namibians spent between N$13,1m and N$4,4m every February importing chocolates and flowers.
For chocolate import, the country imported N$65,7 million worth of chocolate in February only in the past five years, highlighting how the deemed month of romance influenced the country’s spending and consumption of chocolate.
For every first quarter, the import of chocolate increases from January to February. It maintains a weak upward movement or decreases- except for one year when it maintained its increase from January till March.
In 2017, chocolate imports increased by N$3,7 million in February from January and decreased by N$3,9 million in March 2021.
For 2018, Namibian increased their chocolate import by N$3,5 million in February, and in March, they just increased it with N$1,1 million.
In 2019, the country increased its expenditure import by N$915 645 from January to February but increased by less than that for March.
In the Covid-19 engulfed 2020, the country still managed to keep up with their trend of importing more chocolate in February, importing N$1,9 million more than January.
The chocolate import reached its highest level for the period under review in February 2021 when N$16,7 million left the country to procure the cocoa made products, after N$14,5 million wort of chocolate were imported in February 2020.
ROSES ARE RED. VIOLETS ARE BLUE
During the same period, the import data shows that Namibia import for flowers jumps in February for the first quarter of the years observed.
Five years, aggregate flower import during the February month amount to N$22 million, as the country spends roughly N$4,4 million a month importing all kinds of flowers in February.
For 2017, the country importers increased their flower import from January to February by N$1,5 million, and in March, they just increased by N$541 900.
In 2018 February, flower imports were increased by N$2,3 million, and the import got reduced for March by N$1,3 million.
Keeping up with the trend in 2019, the importers have increased their expenditure on flowers for February, bringing in more than N$2,9 million worth of flowers compared to January.
However, in March 2019, they have decreased their flower import by N$1,3 million.
The same importing pattern was also observed in the 2020 quarter when it came to flower import for February- increasing the import by N$2,1 million and reducing it in March.
Last year, the same pattern was observed as romance deemed February induced a high import of flowers.
However, 2021 is the only year Namibia has spent less than N$4 million in flower imports for the past five years. NSA did not offer an explanation why.
The country imports flowers such as fresh-cut flowers and buds, roses, dried, dyed, bleached flowers, and buds.
Plus chrysanthemums, fresh lilies (Lilium spp), and parts of plants for ornamental purposes.