Exports increased 18.2 percent to ZAR 90.79 billion in September over August. Sales of precious metals and stones recorded the highest increase (44.9 percent), followed by mineral products (24.3 percent), vehicles and transport equipment (22.4 percent) and chemical products (21.6 percent). In contrast, shipments of vegetables shrank 13.5 percent.
Exports to the American countries rose 26.6 percent; sales to Europe grew 25.2 percent and those to Africa advanced 16.3 percent.
Imports rose a meager 0.2 percent to ZAR 93.71 billion in September. Vegetables’ purchases increased the most (76.7 percent) and those of base metals increased 13.9 percent.
The cumulative deficit for 2014 is ZAR 73.74 billion compared to ZAR 63.07 billion in 2013.
Excluding trade with neighbors Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland, the country’s trade gap amounted to ZAR 12.64 billion in September and ZAR 149.43 billion in 2014.