Jordan’s Numa plans expansion to Saudi Arabia after Visa collaboration

Jordan’s Numa plans expansion to Saudi Arabia after Visa collaboration
Jordan’s Numa plans expansion to Saudi Arabia after Visa collaboration

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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - Egypt’s trade deficit rises 17.8% in December amid export decline, import fluctuations

RIYADH: Egypt’s annual trade deficit rose by 17.8 percent in December due to a decline in the value of key commodities such as fertilizers and petroleum products.

According to the report from the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics, the North African nation registered a trade deficit of $3.03 billion in the final month of 2023, up from $2.57 billion in December 2022. 

The report indicated a 23 percent year-on-year decline in export value, totaling $3.48 billion. Imports also decreased by 8.2 percent over the same period, reaching a total of $6.51 billion.

The decline in exports is primarily attributed to the reduced value of certain commodities, including a 48.8 percent reduction in fertilizers, a 46.8 percent decrease in petroleum products, and an 88.1 percent drop in natural and liquefied gas.

Additionally, plastics in their primary forms also experienced a 35.5 percent fall in export value during the period. 

However, despite these declines, the export revenue of specific commodities increased during the same month compared to the previous year. Ready-made clothes saw a 24.9 percent increase, fresh fruits rose by 3.6 percent, and crude oil experienced a growth of 60.2 percent. Meanwhile, pastries and various food preparations also witnessed a similar growth, increasing by 5 percent. 

The decline in the value of imports was primarily due to a diminished value of certain commodities, such as organic and inorganic chemicals by 8.2 percent, plastics in their primary forms by 17.2 percent, soybeans by 14.7 percent, and wood and its products by 40.5 percent.  

Furthermore, imports of certain commodities increased during the month compared to the corresponding period in 2022. This includes petroleum products by 24.7 percent, raw materials of iron or steel by 80.2 percent, medicines and pharmaceutical preparations by 5.8 percent, as well as, wheat by 20.7 percent. 

Meanwhile, Egypt has made significant strides in reducing its budget deficit by selling real estate and securing a support package with the International Monetary Fund, according to its finance minister as reported by Reuters on Sunday.

Egypt’s primary budget surplus will rise to above 3.5 percent in the fiscal year that will begin in July, Finance Minister Mohamed Maait told a news conference on Sunday.

The primary surplus does not include interest payments, which in the seven months to end-January accounted for well over half of all expenditures and have kept Egypt deeply in deficit.

The finance ministry last month forecast a primary general budget surplus equal to 2.5 percent of gross domestic product for the current fiscal 2023/24 year.

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