According to the First Quarter 2011 Treasury Bulletin released Tuesday the deficit “is largely due to increased fuel import costs, coupled with higher costs on imports of raw materials and intermediate goods for industries”.
Imports in the first quarter increased to US$1, 5 billion fromUS$1, 1 billion during the same period last year.
“Most imports comprised of motor vehicles, ICT equipment, machinery, chemicals, fuel, cereals among others,” the bulletin said.
It said that exports in the first quarter surged 67, 2% to rake in US$1 billion. It said major exports were minerals and tobacco products.
According to treasury, the economy projects to record to reduce its trade deficit to US$1, 18 billion this year to US$1, 78 billion registered last year.
Exports are expected to surge to US$4 billion fromUS$3, 3 billion recorded last year.
Imports are expected to increase marginally to US$5, 2 billion fromUS$5, 1 billion recorded last year.