According to data obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Nigeria has recorded its highest foreign trade deficit since 1981 as the trade balance stood at a deficit of N7.38trillion in 2020.
This is the second time Nigeria is recording a negative trade balance in the past 10 years.
According to the recent foreign trade report, total imports in 2020 were valued at N19.9trillion exceeding the total exports of N12.52trillion, indicating a trade deficit of N7.38trillion.
In 2016, during a similar recession as the one recorded in 2020, Nigeria recorded a negative trade balance of N290.1 billion, owing to an 11.1% decline in the value of exports. However, the current trade deficit is more than 25 times higher than that recorded in 2016.
Although Nigeria’s economy grew by 0.11% in Q4 2020, marking the exit from recession occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Q4 2020 trade deficit of N2.73 trillion was the highest recorded in the year.