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Foreign Trade in Figures

Trade represents 41% of Haiti's GDP (World Bank, 2020). The high cost of port transportation, corruption and lack of investments are major obstacles to development of foreign trade. A small, undeveloped financial sector does not adequately support the private sector. Most financial transactions are handled informally and credit for new business ventures remains severely constrained. Political turmoil further debilitates Haiti's trade potential. Haiti mainly exports clothing, scrap metal, vegetable oils, dates and cocoa, while importing rice, cotton fabric, vehicles and fuel (Trading Economics). According to IMF Foreign Trade Forecasts, the volume of exports of goods and services increased by an estimated 25.9% in 2021 and is expected to increase by 0.6% in 2022, while the volume of imports of goods and services increased by an estimated 21.9% in 2021 and is expected to decrease by 4.6% in 2022.

The island's main trading partners are the United States (84% of total exports), the Dominican Republic (3.2%), Canada (3%), Mexico (2.1%), and China (1.1%) (UNCTAD data). Main suppliers are the United States (20.7% of total imports), China (18.8%), Netherlands Antilles (15.7%), and Indonesia (8.5%) (CIA World Factbook). Although Haiti does not grant preferred tariffs to any nation, the country is open to trade. Custom duties are not too high (from 0% to 20%), with the exception of oil (90%), and the average applied tariff rate is 6.6%. The country does not have many trade barriers. However, customs duties on finished goods are higher than those on raw materials.

Haiti imports much more than it exports, resulting in a significant trade deficit of USD 2,7 billion in 2019. According to the latest available data, in 2020, exports of goods amounted to USD 721 million, while imports reached USD 2,9 billion. The country exported USD 201 million worth in services and imported USD 566 million. Although the COVID-19 pandemic strongly impacted the exportation of goods, mainly due to a decrease in U.S. demand, textile exports are expected to significantly increase in the coming years with a rebound of international economy. However, exports of agricultural products are expected to keep declining due to the weakness and vulnerability of the sector.

 
Foreign Trade Indicators 20162017201820192020
Imports of Goods (million USD) 3,4663,8774,8224,5132,971
Exports of Goods (million USD) 1,0029991,0781,200721
Imports of Services (million USD) 1,0069911,1431,013566
Exports of Services (million USD) 608489663488201
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 11994-4
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -7-1-1-2-5
Trade Balance (million USD) -2,188-2,626-3,406-2,997n/a
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 4244464741
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 3133353632
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 121111118

Source: WTO – World Trade Organisation ; World Bank - Latest available data.

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Latest Update: April 2022

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