CAIRO: Egypt’s non-oil exports rose 7.2 percent in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period last year, reaching $7.4 billion, said Trade and Industry Minister Nevin Jameh.
“This tangible increase came despite the current circumstances related to the coronavirus crisis that the whole world is suffering from, thanks to the efforts made by the government to support the production and export sectors during the crisis,” she added.
Egyptian imports saw a slight increase in the first quarter of 2021 to $16.9 billion, compared to $16.67 billion in the same period last year.
Jameh said these positive indicators contributed to achieving a 1 percent decrease in the trade balance deficit to $9.5 billion, compared to $9.6 billion in the same period last year.
Ismail Jaber, head of the General Organization for Export and Import Control, said the chemical products and fertilizer sectors dominated Egypt’s export list in the first quarter of 2021.
Exports of chemical products and fertilizers amounted to $1.5 billion, building materials $1.3 billion, food industries $965 million, and engineering and electronic goods $739 million.
Jaber said Egypt’s top export destinations were China ($3.1 billion), the US ($1.49 billion), Germany ($970 million), Russia ($855 million) and Italy ($689 million). These five countries, he added, accounted for 42.1 percent of Egyptian imports.
Egypt is expecting economic growth of 5.4 percent in the next fiscal year 2021/2022, up from 3.3 percent expected in 2020/2021.
The country recently approved its budget, which aims to reduce the country’s deficit and focuses on pushing social protection efforts, improving citizens’ standard of living, increasing wage allocations and rewards for workers, and financing grant incentives and transportation allowances for workers transferred to the New Administrative Capital.
The proceeds of budget revenues are likely to reach about EGP1.3 trillion ($80 billion), according to estimates for the next fiscal year 2020/2021, compared to expected revenues of EGP1.117 trillion during the current fiscal year.
The estimates reflect an annual growth in revenues of 16.4 percent, achieved by expanding the tax base, activating electronic payments, expanding the use of modern methods of risk management, collecting government revenues and working to increase linking the proceeds to economic activity.