Botswana Trade Deficit Widens as Diamond Sales Slump
Author:bea Date:2/16/2009 7:38:36 PM Read:3459
The trade deficit of Botswana, the worlds biggest diamond producer, widened to 2 billion pula ($249.7 million) in November from 1.4 billion pula a month earlier as diamond exports declined, the Central Statistics Office said.
The shortfall was the fifth in the first 11 months of 2008, with deficits also being recorded in April, May, July and October, Anna Majelantle, the government statistician, said in an interview in the capital, Gaborone, today. Total exports for the month were valued at 1.08 billion pula, while imports were 3.08 billion pula, Majelantle said.
The value of diamond exports tumbled 55 percent from a month earlier to 821.5 million pula, she said. The southern African countrys industry is run by De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd., the worlds biggest diamond company, through a joint venture with the government. Copper and nickel exports fell 42 percent during the month, Majelantle said.