By Douglas McIntosh
KINGSTON, Jamaica, (JIS) – Jamaica generated calendar year export earnings of US$1.15 billion between January and September 2021. This out-turn represents a 26.3 percent increase over the US$910.7 million recorded for the corresponding period in 2020.
Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) director-general, Carol Coy, says the increase was mainly driven by higher exports of ‘Minerals Fuels’, which climbed by 96.8 percent.
She was speaking during STATIN’s digital quarterly media briefing, on Monday, January 17. Coy said earnings from domestic exports increased by 18.4 percent to US$1.03 billion and accounted for 89.6 per cent of total outflows.
“Exports from the manufacturing industry increased by 32.1 percent due mainly to higher [outflows] of ‘Refined Petroleum Products’ and ‘Food, Beverages and Tobacco”, she further informed.
The director-general told journalists that earnings from ‘mining and quarrying’ were 6.2 percent above the corresponding nine-month period in 2020, due to higher exports of alumina. Additionally, she said agricultural exports rose by 7.5 percent, largely resulting from higher outflows of coffee and yams.
Coy advised that Jamaica’s imports expenditure between January and September 2021 climbed to US$4.25 billion; and pointed out that this is a 23.3 percent increase over the US$3.4 billion spent for the corresponding period the previous year.
The director-general said this was largely attributable to higher imports of ‘consumer goods’, totalling 9.5 percent; ‘raw materials/intermediate goods’, up 22.2 percent; and ‘Fuels and Lubricants’, up 62.2 percent.
“It should be noted that spending on exports has not yet returned to the pre-coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic levels. In the corresponding 2019 period, imports were valued at US$4.85 billion,” Coy told journalists.