South Africa Balance of Trade  1957-2016 | Data | Chart | Calendar

South Africa trade surplus increased to ZAR 8.22 billion in December of 2015 from a downwardly revised ZAR 0.68 billion surplus in the previous month and beating market expectations of ZAR 4.85 billion. It was the highest value since December of 2010, as exports dropped 5.1 percent while imports fell at a much faster 13.3 percent. Balance of Trade in South Africa averaged -474.94 ZAR Million from 1957 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 10327.90 ZAR Million in December of 2010 and a record low of -24487.20 ZAR Million in January of 2013. Balance of Trade in South Africa is reported by the South African Revenue Service.

South Africa Balance of Trade
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Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
8221.07 682.95 10327.90 -24487.20 1957 - 2015 ZAR Million Monthly
Since 2012, South Africa has been posting trade deficits mainly due to higher imports of fuel and high value added goods while exports have been hurt by´several strikes in key mining sectors. In 2013, the biggest trade deficits were recorded with Saudi Arabia, China, India, Germany and Nigeria and the biggest trade surpluses with Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, the Netherlands and the United States. This page provides the latest reported value for - South Africa Balance of Trade - plus previous releases, historical high and low, short-term forecast and long-term prediction, economic calendar, survey consensus and news. South Africa Balance of Trade - actual data, historical chart and calendar of releases - was last updated on February of 2016.


Calendar GMT Reference Actual Previous Consensus Forecast (i)
2015-11-30 12:00 PM Oct ZAR-21.4B ZAR -1.26B ZAR-4.9B ZAR -2.1B
2015-12-30 12:00 PM Nov ZAR1.77B ZAR-21.6B ZAR-3.2B ZAR-6.9B
2016-01-29 12:00 PM Dec ZAR8.22B ZAR0.68B ZAR4.85B ZAR -2.7B
2016-02-26 12:00 PM Jan ZAR8.22B -9.5B
2016-03-31 12:00 PM Feb -0.2B
2016-04-29 12:00 PM Mar -1.5B

South Africa Trade Surplus Widens to 5-Year High


South Africa trade surplus increased to ZAR 8.22 billion in December of 2015 from a downwardly revised ZAR 0.68 billion surplus in the previous month and beating market expectations of ZAR 4.85 billion. It was the highest value since December of 2010, as exports dropped 5.1 percent while imports fell at a much faster 13.3 percent.

Exports decreased by ZAR 4.80 billion or 5.1 percent to ZAR 88.77 billion in December of 2015 from ZAR 93.57 billin in November, mainly due to lower sales of vehicles and transport equipment (-28 percent), machinery and electronics (-14 percent) and precious metals and stones (-5 percent). By contrast, shipments of vegetable products went up strongly by 50 percent. South African exports major destinations were China (8.3 of total exports), the US (7.3 percent), Japan (5.4 percent), Germany (5.3 percent) and Botswana (4.4 percent).

Imports fell sharply by ZAR 12.34 billion or 13.3 percent to ZAR 80.55 billion from ZAR 92.89 billion in the previous month, as purchases of equipment components (-35 percent) and textiles (-30 percent) led the fall. Also, imports of base metals went down by 22 percent; and those of machinery and electronics declined by 16 percent. Meanwhile, imports of vehicle and transport equipment advanced 14 percent. The main sources of imports to the country were China (18.1 percent of total imports), Germany (9.6 percent), the US (7.8 percent), India (4.2 percent) and Nigeria (3.5 percent).

Considering full 2015, the trade deficit narrowed 40.9 percent to ZAR 48.63 billion compared to ZAR 82.27 billion in 2014, as exports increased by 3.8 percent while imports rose only by 0.4 percent. 

Excluding trade with neighboring Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland, the country posted a ZAR 0.04 billion deficit in December and a ZAR 154.4 billion gap in 2015. 

Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
1/29/2016 12:45:25 PM

South Africa Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade 8221.07 682.95 10327.90 -24487.20 ZAR Million [+]
Exports 80549.46 85793.98 94658.43 55.80 ZAR Million [+]
Imports 80549.46 107394.70 110321.85 66.10 ZAR Million [+]
Current Account -165000.00 -124101.00 15627.00 -231981.00 ZAR Million [+]
Current Account to GDP -5.40 -5.80 6.00 -7.50 percent [+]
External Debt 134463.00 141663.00 145082.00 33262.00 USD Million [+]
Tourist Arrivals 1547900.00 1233249.00 1536881.00 37430.00 [+]
Gold Reserves 125.22 125.19 183.51 123.48 Tonnes [+]
Crude Oil Production 3.00 3.00 58.00 2.00 BBL/D/1K [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 1607.00 1619.00 1624.00 1.00 ZAR Billion [+]
Terrorism Index 4.23 3.52 4.23 0.22 [+]




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Brazil 923.00 Jan/16
Brunei 308.00 Nov/15
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Denmark 1927.30 Dec/15
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Germany 18800.00 Dec/15
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Greece -1563.50 Dec/15
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Italy 4409.43 Nov/15
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Japan 140.20 Dec/15
Jordan -756171.10 Nov/15
Kazakhstan 1198.40 Nov/15
Kenya -114283.00 Nov/15
Kosovo -230094.00 Dec/15
Kuwait 1836.10 Sep/15
Kyrgyzstan -237.90 Nov/15
Laos -488.34 Sep/15
Latvia -155.50 Dec/15
Lebanon -1604.94 Dec/15
Lesotho -2384.00 Sep/15
Liberia -88.50 Sep/15
Libya -17675.60 Dec/14
Liechtenstein 315120.00 Sep/15
Lithuania -210.50 Dec/15
Luxembourg -0.38 Nov/15
Macau -6083788.93 Dec/15
Macedonia -228611.00 Dec/15
Madagascar -30435.00 Dec/16
Malawi -57415.30 Mar/15
Malaysia 7990.00 Dec/15
Maldives -137.10 Nov/15
Mali -100.60 Mar/15
Malta -149486.00 Dec/15
Mauritania -268.39 Sep/15
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Mexico -927.00 Dec/15
Moldova -189.10 Dec/15
Monaco -86.40 Sep/15
Mongolia 18.00 Nov/15
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Morocco -9053.00 Sep/15
Mozambique -1274.70 Sep/15
Myanmar -942.70 Jan/16
Namibia -9830.66 Sep/15
Nepal -76499.00 Jun/15
Netherlands 3111.00 Dec/15
New Caledonia -11456.00 Dec/15
New Zealand -52.62 Dec/15
Nicaragua -369.80 Nov/15
Niger -441985.00 Sep/15
Nigeria 197187.70 Sep/15
North Korea -695.83 Dec/14
Norway 18114.00 Dec/15
Oman 284.70 Jul/15
Pakistan -215151.00 Dec/15
Palestine -335.30 Nov/15
Panama -912393.10 Nov/15
Papua New Guinea 4191.00 Sep/15
Paraguay -4863.84 Jan/16
Peru 210.00 Dec/15
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Poland 373.00 Dec/15
Portugal -1128.00 Dec/15
Puerto Rico 2916.00 Sep/16
Qatar 9305.00 Dec/15
Republic of the Congo 4092.35 Dec/10
Romania -1174.90 Dec/15
Russia 10980.00 Dec/15
Rwanda -149.04 Nov/15
Sao Tome and Principe -31.85 Sep/15
Saudi Arabia 44465.00 Sep/15
Senegal -170.26 Nov/15
Serbia -541.50 Dec/15
Seychelles -46.86 Dec/15
Sierra Leone -89.75 Mar/15
Singapore 5158.30 Dec/15
Slovakia -16.30 Dec/15
Slovenia -63.90 Dec/15
Somalia -1281.56 Dec/14
South Africa 8221.07 Dec/15
South Korea 5362.41 Jan/16
South Sudan -4987.00 Dec/13
Spain -1850000.00 Nov/15
Sri Lanka -629.70 Nov/15
Sudan -661598.00 Sep/15
Suriname -130.90 Sep/15
Swaziland 1098.48 Mar/15
Sweden 4700.00 Dec/15
Switzerland 2544.00 Dec/15
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Thailand 1490.00 Dec/15
Togo -68.29 Dec/14
Trinidad and Tobago 460.40 Jun/15
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