By year-end 2018, the country recorded a total trade value of ₦32.3 trillion1, representing 39.3% increase over the corresponding period in 2017. The volume of total merchandise trade in 2018 is noted to be the highest since 2014, nearly double pre-recession levels. Export component grew by approximately 41%, from ₦13.6 trillion in 2017 to ₦19.1 trillion in 2018. Oil (crude and non-crude) is responsible for the most part of export growth in the review year and accounts for about 94% of total exports. Agriculture and manufacturing sector exports also recorded a boost, rising to ₦302 billion and ₦645.7 billion respectively. Similarly, imports rose by 37.5% to ₦13.2 trillion. With exports exceeding imports, the current account balance of trade improved to ₦5.9 trillion in 2018. To further boost Nigeria’s current account position going forward, supply-side policies to improve the efficiency and competitiveness of domestic industries, and thus exports is crucial.
Macroeconomic Report & Economic Updates
Crude oil price increased, in the week under review, to its highest price in 2016. Nigerias bonny light increased by $1.38 from $48.02 per barrel on May 20, 2016 to $49.64 per barrel on May 27, 2016, while Brent crude was sold for $50 per barrel on May 26, 2016. The catalyst for price gains in the period under review is the supply-side contractions, with unplanned production shortages in Nigeria, Canada and Iraq. The upward trend of prices may unlock more supplies in subsequent weeks, but the OPEC meeting scheduled for June 2, 2016, could moderate the effect. Nigeria is expected to benefit from crude oil price rising above the $38 per barrel benchmark. Unfortunately, supply disruptions continue to negatively affect oil revenue and may have contributed to the depletion of external reserve by over $153 millionthis week. The federal government, in collaboration with relevant security agencies, should find a lasting solution to the vandalism of oil pipelines and production facilities.
Crude Oil Price: Crude oil price attained a historical low of $30.7 in January 2016 largely due to excess global oil supply. Crude Oil Production and Export: Oil production has continued to fall in