Like Portuguese Guinea, Guinea-Bissau has had chronic balance-of-payments problems because of its huge annual trade deficit, which has persisted despite efforts to restructure trade by diversifying the range of commodities available for export and by establishing new trading partners and more favorable trade agreements. Foreign assistance is an essential element in meeting payments needs.
The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reports that in 2000 the purchasing power parity of Guinea-Bissau's exports was $80 million while imports totaled $55.2 million resulting in a trade surplus of $24.8 million.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reports that in 1997 Guinea-Bissau had exports of goods totaling $49 million and imports totaling $62 million. The services credit totaled $8 million and debit $26 million. The following table summarizes Guinea-Bissau's balance of payments as reported by the IMF for 1997 in millions of US dollars.
|Balance on goods||-14|
|Balance on services||-18|
|Balance on income||-14|
|Direct investment abroad||…|
|Direct investment in Guinea-Bissau||…|
|Portfolio investment assets||…|
|Portfolio investment liabilities||…|
|Other investment assets||-6|
|Other investment liabilities||8|
|Net Errors and Omissions||-19|
|Reserves and Related Items||15|