Half year export performance shows slight increment

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Anteneh Aklilu

The export of flower flourishes in the first half of the budget year by achieving 183 percent of the target, while the export sector is still going under target.
In the first half of the budget year the country earned USD 1.33 billion achieving 80 percent of the target for the stated period.
Meanwhile the achievement is lower than the target it has shown 10 percent increment compared with the same period of last budget year.
According to the report from the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI), few sectors achieve more than the target set at the beginning of the budget year, but the major export items did not achieve the target.
The biggest achievement secured in the stated period compared with the projection was from the flower sector, which is included as one of the major items about a decade and half ago.
The six month report indicated that the ministry expected to get USD 123 million from flower export but the actual performance was USD 225.3, an increment of USD 102 million. The first six months achievement compared with the 2018/19 first half year has stood over double and up by 113 percent. Regarding the export items rank flower sector moved to the second place.
Wondimu Filate, Public Relation head of MoTI said that the high performance on the flower sector is the expansion of flower farms and solutions regarding instability in the area that allowed getting ample labour.
The other sector that is included in the horticulture investment sector, fruit and vegetable, achieved a 122 percent target.
According to the six months report of MoTI, the fruit and vegetable sector contributed USD 51 million, while the target was USD 41 million. However the fruit and vegetable sector earnings climbed significantly the volume stood at 76 percent of the target.
Khat that is one of the major hard currency earnings for the country has also stood at third level by earnings for the stated period but it has surpassed the projection.
The report indicated that khat earnings have reached at USD 174 million with 106 percent of the target. The achievement put the khat sector the third major hard currency source for the country.
Wondimu indicated that alleviation of contraband has contributed for higher performance.
The textile sector has also registered better performance compared with the performance a year ago. According to the six month report textile and garment sector contributes close to USD 100 million that is 86 percent of the target and 45 percent higher than last year performance.
Contrary the oil seed sector that was the second hard currency earning sector for the country decreased significantly.
In the first half of the budget year the oil seed sector that is mainly influenced by sesame seeds has contributed USD 108 million that is 61 percent of the target and 28 percent lower than the same period of last year.
“In relation with the new directive to cut under invoicing, farmers have been misinformed by suppliers and suppliers hoard the seeds,” the Public Relation head said. He said that ample seed was not supplied at the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange trading floor in the period that contributed for weak performance.
The mining sector mainly the gold export has also dropped compared with the same period of last year.
The report indicated that in the stated period the hard currency earning secured from gold is USD 13.5 million that is 20 percent of the target and over 30 percent lower than last year performance.
The leather sector, which is one of the country’s historical hard currency earnings shows a 27 percent decrease compared with the past year similar period performance and only generate USD 49 million.
The pulse sector at the same time reduced by 14 percent compared with the same period of last year. In the six months the pulse sector contributes USD 95 million that is 72 percent of the target.
Coffee, the major export item of Ethiopia, has contributed USD 365 million in the stated period. Despite showing an increment of nine percent compared with last year performance its achievement is 79 percent of the target.
MoTI report indicates that the volume of coffee exported in the period has surpassed the target and stood at 102 percent but the under invoice practice affects the earnings.
Contraband and some illegal acts including under invoicing and hoarding were stated as the major challenge for weak achievements on some sectors, according to the ministry.
Regarding destination Somalia retakes its top position by the share of 18 percent from the total export items followed by the Netherlands, which is the major destination for flower export.
From the total export the Netherlands and North America have taken 17 and 14 percent share and has stood at second and third. China that was the top export destination for the last two budget years replacing Somalia has stood at fourth rank.
The country has exported its products for 136 countries and agriculture sector earning led by USD 1.07 billion and followed by industry sector that contributes USD 221 million.
In the budget year the government has targeted to get USD 3.73 billion from export, which is fragile that did not show any sign of growth for the last nine years.