Tanzania's gold exports revenues surged by 18% in the year that ended May 31st 2011 due to increased prices on the international market.
The Central Bank of Tanzania said that in its latest economic monthly review, Tanzania exported gold worth USD 1.67 billion in May compared with USD 1.42 billion a year earlier.
The price of gold rose by 26.5% to USD 1,321.17 per troy ounce mainly due to the weakening of US dollar against other major currencies which in turn increase the demand for gold as a safe investment.
Tanzania is Africa's third largest gold producer after Ghana and South Africa. Gold is the country's largest export revenue earner. Tanzania's total gold output in 2010 hit 44.6 tonnes.
The commencement of gold shipments from African Barrick Gold Limited's Buzwagi Gold Mine has also boosted the country’s gold export potential. Imports of goods and services grew by 16.0% to USD 9,361.2 million, largely due to rise in global oil prices following an increase in demand in the world market coupled with geopolitical instabilities in North Africa and Middle East.
Traditional exports recorded a notable performance of USD 695.7 million which is 50.1% higher than the amount recorded during the year ending April 2010. The improvement resulted from both higher export volumes and export unit prices of coffee, tobacco and cashew nuts. The increase in export volumes is due to bumper harvests of the three crops during 2010 to 2011 production season.
(Filed by Matsiko Mike Steelguru Uganda correspondent)