South Africa posted a trade surplus of ZAR 1.74 billion in May 2019, compared to a ZAR 3.43 billion deficit in the previous month and below market expectations of a ZAR 2.7 billion surplus. Exports jumped 8.1 percent while imports increased at a slower 3.0 percent. Balance of Trade in South Africa averaged 94.90 ZAR Million from 1957 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 17164.95 ZAR Million in May of 2016 and a record low of -26959.20 ZAR Million in January of 2018.

Balance of Trade in South Africa is expected to be 15000.00 ZAR Million by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Balance of Trade in South Africa to stand at 6500.00 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the South Africa Balance of Trade is projected to trend around -5642.00 ZAR Million in 2020, according to our econometric models.

South Africa Balance of Trade
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Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2019-03-29 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Feb ZAR3.99B ZAR-13.07B ZAR2B ZAR 3.6B
2019-04-30 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Mar ZAR5B ZAR3.87B ZAR4.8B ZAR 6.2B
2019-05-31 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Apr ZAR-3.43B ZAR4.7B ZAR1.25B ZAR 1.4B
2019-06-28 12:00 PM Balance of Trade May ZAR1.74B ZAR-3.43B ZAR2.7B ZAR 2.0B
2019-07-31 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Jun ZAR1.74B ZAR 15B
2019-08-30 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Jul
2019-09-27 12:00 PM Balance of Trade Aug



South Africa Trade Surplus Smaller than Expected

South Africa posted a trade surplus of ZAR 1.74 billion in May 2019, compared to a ZAR 3.43 billion deficit in the previous month and below market expectations of a ZAR 2.7 billion surplus.

Exports jumped 8.1 percent month-over-month to ZAR 112.07 billion in May, boosted by sales of precious metals & stones (29 percent), vegetable products (37 percent), chemical products (24 percent), machinery & electronics (11 percent), and base metals (5 percent). By contrast, exports of vehicles & transport equipments dropped 9 percent. The most important export partners were China (11.0 percent of total sales), the US (7.2 percent), Germany (6.8 percent), the UK (6.1 percent) and Japan (5.4 percent).

Imports rose at a slower 3.0 percent to ZAR 110.33 billion, mainly due to purchases of vehicles & transport equipment (22 percent), machinery & electronics (7 percent), and base metals (10 percent). On the other hand, imports of vegetable products and mineral products declined 25 percent and 4 percent respectively. Main import partners were China (18.5 percent of total purchases), Germany (9.1 percent), the US (7.3 percent), India (4.9 percent) and Nigeria (4.6 percent).

Excluding trade with neighbouring Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland, the country's trade gap was ZAR 7.31 billion. Exports rose 7.3 percent to ZAR 99.24 billion while imports increased 2.6 percent to ZAR 106.55 billion.


South African Revenue Service | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
6/28/2019 1:09:24 PM



South Africa Trade Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Balance of Trade 1737.21 -3427.45 17164.95 -26959.20 ZAR Million [+]
Current Account -142495.00 -110158.00 15627.00 -246452.00 ZAR Million [+]
Current Account to GDP -3.50 -2.50 6.00 -7.50 percent [+]
Imports 110331.94 107164.86 125725.93 66.10 ZAR Million [+]
Exports 112069.15 103639.84 120009.11 55.80 ZAR Million [+]
External Debt 176004.00 172384.00 183239.00 33262.00 USD Million [+]
Tourist Arrivals 1350167.00 1301855.00 1598893.00 37430.00 [+]
Gold Reserves 125.30 125.30 183.51 123.48 Tonnes [+]
Terms Of Trade 107.10 102.30 109.50 42.20 Index Points [+]
Terrorism Index 4.26 4.09 4.26 0.22 [+]
Weapons Sales 149.00 103.00 235.00 1.00 USD Million [+]
Crude Oil Production 1.00 1.00 58.00 1.00 BBL/D/1K [+]
Foreign Direct Investment 11733.00 -8219.00 52712.00 -13910.00 ZAR Billion [+]

Exports by Country  |   Exports by Category  |   Imports by Country  |   Imports by Category



South Africa Balance of Trade

In 2017, South Africa recorded the biggest trade deficits with China, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Thailand, France, Nigeria, Italy and Brazil and the biggest trade surpluses with Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Belgium and Netherlands. 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 July of 2019.

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
1737.21 -3427.45 17164.95 -26959.20 1957 - 2019 ZAR Million Monthly




Country Last Previous
Argentina 1373.00 May/19
Australia 5745.00 May/19
Brazil 5020.00 Jun/19
Canada 762.30 May/19
China 509.76 Jun/19
Euro Area 23033.60 May/19
France -3278.00 May/19
Germany 20600.00 May/19
India -15280.00 Jun/19
Indonesia 196.00 Jun/19
Italy 5347.00 May/19
Japan 589.46 Jun/19
Mexico 1030.71 May/19
Netherlands 5579.00 May/19
Russia 11823.00 May/19
Saudi Arabia 131636.00 Mar/19
Singapore 2447.29 Jun/19
South Africa 1737.21 May/19
South Korea 4168.00 Jun/19
Spain -1605300.00 Apr/19
Switzerland 3251.00 Jun/19
Turkey -1837.83 May/19
United Kingdom -2324.00 May/19
United States -55520.00 May/19


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