Qatar’s trade surplus …

Qatar’s trade surplus fell more than 4% year-on-year (y-o-y) to QR30.88bn last November as its imports witnessed double-digit growth and exports fell.

The energy-rich country’s total exports (valued free-on-board) were down 0.9% to QR39.83bn despite a 96% surge in shipments to China, according to the preliminary estimates of the Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics (MDPS).

Japan continued to be the top destination of Qatar’s exports, followed by South Korea, India, China and Singapore.

However, Qatar’s re-exports surged 70.3% to QR625mn during the review period.

The country’s total exports of domestic products fell 1.5% to QR39.21bn in November last year mainly on lower shipments of crude products and other commodities.

Qatar’s exports of crude petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals tanked 3.2% to QR7.56bn, other commodities by 6.5% to QR5.26bn and petroleum gases and other gaseous hydrocarbons (liquefied natural gas, condensates, propane and butane) by 0.9% to QR23.9bn.

However, non-crude petroleum oils and oils from bituminous minerals soared 10.1% to QR2.48bn.

Petroleum gases and other gaseous hydrocarbons constituted 60.95% of total exports of domestic products in November last year compared to 60.6% the year-ago period; crude petroleum oils 19.28% (19.61%); non-crude petroleum oils and bituminous minerals 6.32% (5.68%) and other commodities 13.41% (14.14%).

“An expected decline in hydrocarbon export revenue, coupled with higher imports on the back of stronger domestic demand, will narrow the (external current account) surplus,” the recently launched Qatar Economic Outlook 2013-14 update said, adding the external current account surplus is expected to drift down but remain sizeable at 26.6% of gross domestic product in 2013.

On exports destinations, Japan accounted for 29.3% of total exports in November 2013 against 28.37% the previous year period, followed by South Korea 16.8% (17.79%), India 9.11% (9.66%), China 7.73% (3.93%) and Singapore 5.55% (5.65%).

Qatar’s exports to China surged 95.6% to QR3.08bn and Japan by 2.4% to QR11.67bn; while those to South Korea and India fell 6.4% each to QR6.69bn and QR3.63bn respectively, and Singapore by 2.6% to QR2.21bn.

Total imports (valued at cost insurance and freight) shot up 12.4% y-o-y to QR8.95bn in November last year, mainly on double-digit growth in shipments from the UK and Germany.

The US, China, Germany, the UAE and the UK were among the top five destinations from where Qatar imported merchandise goods.

The US accounted for 11.51% of Qatar’s imports last November compared to 12.05% the year-ago period, followed by China 9.27% (9.79%), Germany 7.15% (6.52%), the UAE 6.7% (7.9%) and the UK 5.92% (5.14%).

Qatar’s imports from the UK surged 30% to QR0.53bn, Germany by 22.5% to QR0.64bn, the US by 7.5% to QR1.03bn and China by 6.3% to QR0.83bn; whereas those from the UAE fell 5.1% to QR0.60bn.

Aircraft spare parts, telephone sets and other group commodities were the main imported products in November 2013.

Qatar’s imports of aircraft spare parts zoomed 61.3% to QR0.71bn; telephone sets and mobiles by 12.7% to QR0.12bn and other commodities by 12.4% to QR7.41bn; while motor cars and other transport vehicles fell 13.5% to QR0.73bn.

Other commodities constituted 82.79% of Qatar’s total imports in November 2013 against 82.69% the previous year period, followed by motor cars and other passenger vehicles 8.16% (10.54%), aircraft spare parts 7.93% (5.52%) and telephone sets and mobiles 1.34% (1.25%). Source: Gulf Times

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