The Bank of Tanzania (BOT) released its Monthly Economic Review-October 2023 which covers key macroeconomic indicators for the year ending September 2023.
External Sector Performance
The external sector continues to battle with challenges arising from an unhealthy global economic environment.
Nevertheless, the deficit in the current account balance narrowed to USD 3,383.4 million in the year ending September 2023, compared with USD 4,728.2 million in the preceding year.
The outturn was on account of increased seasonal earnings from tourism activities and traditional exports.
Foreign Exchange Reserves
The foreign exchange reserves stock fell to USD 4,880.4 million from USD 4,961.5 million at the end of September 2022, largely credited to the payment of foreign obligations by the Government.
Despite the decrease, reserves were adequate to cover 4 months of projected imports of goods and services, within the country’s benchmark.
The export of goods and services showed an upward trend for three years in a row, rising by 16.1% in the year ending September 2023 to USD 13,414.8 million from the level recorded in the preceding year.
The performance was largely contributed by travel receipts and non-traditional exports, in particular minerals (gold and coal).
Non-traditional Goods and Mineral Exports
Export of non-traditional goods grew by 6.4%, from USD 572.9 million to USD 594.4 million.
The value of gold exports rose by +7.4% to USD 2,983.8 million up from USD 2,777.2 million in the year ending September 2023, driven by volume and price effects.
Coal exports amounted to USD 206.1 million from USD 111.7 million in the previous year, owing to increasing demand in the neighboring countries, and in Europe resulting from supply shortages associated with the war in Ukraine.
Improvement is also observed in horticultural exports, particularly vegetables.
Export of traditional goods increased by 13.9% to USD 853.9 million from USD 749.5 million, driven by tobacco and coffee exports.
On a monthly basis, traditional goods worth USD 124.1 million were exported compared with USD 78.2 million in a similar month in 2022.
Service and Tourism Receipts
Service receipts increased by 30.5% to USD 5,749.2 million in the year ending September 2023 from USD 4,405.5 million in the corresponding period in 2022, mainly resulting from a rise in travel (tourism) and transport receipts.
The surge in travel receipts reflects a steady tourism sector recovery. Tourist arrivals rose to 1,720,501—a record high—from 1,332,709 in the year to September 2022.
On a monthly basis, service receipts were USD 537.1 million in September 2023, compared with USD 407.2 million in September 2022.