The country’s total export earnings fell by 14.9 per cent to $13.39bn in April due to decline in crude oil prices.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) disclosed this in its monthly economic report for the month of April, which was obtained on Friday.
Part of the report read, “Because of the decline in the price of crude oil in 2020Q1, aggregate export earnings declined by 14.9 per cent and 12 per cent to $13.39bn, compared with $15.74bn and $15.22bn in Q4 and 2019 Q1 respectively.
Export of crude oil fell by 20 per cent and 14 per cent to $9.48bn, from $11.84bn and $11.02bn in 2019 Q4 and 2019 Q1 respectively.
This was attributed to the fall in the average price of Nigeria’s reference crude, the bonny light, to $52.48 per barrel in 2020 Q1, from $65.87 and $64.90 per barrel in 2019 Q1 and 2019 Q4 respectively.
Dampened global demand and supply-chain disruptions due to the lockdown measures to contain the COVID-19 pandemic were factors that contributed to the fall in crude oil price.
Non-oil export, on the other hand, increased marginally by 0.9 per cent to $2.16bn, from $2.14bn in 2019 Q4.
It was, however, lower than the $2.36bn recorded in 2019 Q1.
The share of crude oil and gas export was 70.8 per cent and 13.1 per cent respectively, while non-oil export accounted for the balance of 16.1 per cent.
The main drivers of non-oil exports included cashew nuts, cocoa beans, sesame seeds, with the Netherlands, Cote d’Ivoire, Brazil and the USA as the major destinations.
Due to the lull in economic activities, occasioned by the partial lockdown of the economy on account of the COVID-19 pandemic, aggregate nonoil export receipts through banks declined in April 2020.
Aggregate non-oil export receipts through banks amounted to $0.05bn, compared with $0.24bn and $1.83bn in March 2020 and the corresponding period of 2019 respectively.
The development was attributed largely to the 70.8 per cent decrease in receipts from the industrial sector, which stood at $30.07m in April 2020.
In addition, receipts from agricultural, manufactured products and minerals sectors also declined by 87.9 per cent, 79.7 per cent and 18 per cent to $11.02m, $7.71m, and $1.29m respectively, from their levels in the preceding month.
However, receipts from food products increased by 3.9 per cent to $3.62m, from its level in the preceding month, on account of increased export of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
The value of merchandise imports contracted by 19.8 per cent to $13.83bn in 2020 Q1 from $17.24bn in 2019 Q4, driven, largely, by reduced non-oil imports, particularly manufactured goods.