Finance and Bank Officials Keen to Limit Trade Deficit

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Top economic officials have met with the Central Bank to discuss ways to limit imports in a bid to reduce the country’s trade deficit.

Officials from the Ministry of Planning and Finance, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry attended the meeting.

The departments discussed ways to promote exports, limit imports, and to increase earnings of foreign currency through the service sector, including tourism and travel.

Government statistics from the end of last year – December 30 – revealed more than US$19 billion in international trade over 2016.

This included exports totalling about $8.3 billion while imports totalled about $11.53 billion. That means a trade deficit of about $3.23 billion.

The five-year short-term plan for national development, from 2016-17 to 2020-21, seeks to reduce the import of luxury goods except essential items, in order to reduce the trade deficit and limit the inflation rate.

According to the Central Statistics Organisation, the trade deficit for 2012-13 was $91.9 million, while in 2013-14 it was $2.55 billion, in 2014-2015 it was $4.91 billion, and in 2015-2016 it was $5.4 billion.

The trade deficit for 2016-17 could be $3.1 billion, according to an estimated figure of income and expenses for the fiscal year.

 

Source: Eleven Myanmar

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