Guinea-Bissau - International trade



Since independence Guinea-Bissau has been internationally non-aligned, in order to solicit aid from all available quarters. While trading mostly with Western countries, it has also courted the other countries (including China and Brazil). In March 1997, Guinea-Bissau joined UEMOA as a full member and also became a full member of ECOWAS.

Since independence, trade has experienced many years of deficit. In 1999, imports were US$101 million. The World Factbook estimated that by 2000 imports had dropped to $55.2 million. Government efforts to diversify exports and to reduce export taxes have improved exports from US$27 million in 1998 to US$48 million in 1999, but this growth still left a trade deficit of US$53 million. Port closures during the war hindered exports, but the IMF expects exports to reach previous levels of

Trade (expressed in billions of US$): Guinea-Bissau
Exports Imports
1975 .007 .038
1980 .011 .055
1985 .012 N/A
1990 .019 .068
1995 .044 .133
1998 N/A N/A
SOURCE: International Monetary Fund. International Financial Statistics Yearbook 1999.

Exchange rates: Guinea-Bissau
Communaute Financiere Africaine francs per US$1
Jan 2001 699.21
2000 711.98
1999 615.70
1998 589.95
1997 583.67
1996 26,373
Note: Rate for 1996 is in Guinea-Bissauan pesos per US dollar. As of May 1, 1997, Guinea-Bissau adopted the CFA franc as the national currency; since January 1, 1999, the CFA franc is pegged to the euro at a rate of 655.957 CFA francs per euro.
SOURCE: CIA World Factbook 2001 [ONLINE].

60,000 metric tons per year from 1999 onwards. By 2000, exports had risen to US$80 million, according to the World Factbook, giving the country a small surplus. Exports go mainly to India, Singapore, Italy, and Portugal, with imports mostly coming from Portugal, France, Senegal, and the Netherlands.

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