Shifting now to the economy: According to the Statistical Institute of Belize for the month of June, imports went up by eighty-two point four percent, while domestic exports were down by thirty-three point one percent when compared to last year. SIB’s latest statistics on trade for the June show that Belize imported goods valuing 189.3 million dollars, a significant increase of 85.5 million dollars from the same month in 2020, when imports totaled just 103.7 million dollars. SIB says the figures reflected something of a return to normal levels, following sharp decreases in imports across all categories during last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Acting Director General at SIB, Diana Castillo Trejo shares more details on the nation’s latest external trade report.
Diana Castillo Trejo, AG Director Geneal, SIB: “It’s important to note that we’re comparing with June of last year which was a time when there were sever disruptions to imports in particular. We saw huge drops in the level of imports in the earlier months of the pandemic last year so we’re comparing with an especially low month last year which is why you see such a huge jump and we saw increases across all the categories basically for that very same reason because imports in this month last year were especially low, they were out of the ordinary low. Then you look at things like imports to the free zones at this time last year the freezone wasn’t open so of course we would expect that imports to the freezone would have dropped significantly during that time and now that it has reopened and now that we are basically seeing at least from the import side we’re seeing that trade is starting to return to normal levels, normal pre 2020 levels. You would naturally expect to see big jumps across the categories.”