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OECD Factbook 2011-2012: Economic, Environmental and Social Statistics
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branch Globalisation
branch Trade
    branch Africa's trade partners

The 2011 edition of the African Economic Outlook investigates the increasing intensity and changing patterns of Africa's trade. It analyses policy options for African policy-makers to make the best out of Africa's rapid integration into the global economy.

Definition

The data shown here refer to Africa's total merchandise trade, i.e. imports plus exports. These data are broken down by OECD and non-OECD partners and illustrate the biggest countries in each group. The definitions of merchandise imports and exports are explained under “International trade in goods”.

Comparability

All the statistics provided are based on “ComTrade SITC Revision 3” data series provided by the United Nations. They have been compiled from trade volumes declared by Africa's trading partners to maximize the availability of the data. They can be considered of reasonable quality and the most comparable series available across countries and over time.

Overview

Trade between Africa and non-OECD countries has been growing rapidly during the past decade. China, India, and Brazil are leading the pack. The share of non-OECD countries in Africa's trade has risen from 26% in 2000 to 39% in 2009. Yet, OECD countries remain key trading partners for the continent and trade volume between them and Africa countries have kept growing. Trade between OECD countries and Africa has doubled in nominal value.

OECD partners still dominate African trade and continue growing, though less rapidly than other emerging partners. The United States was overtaken by China in 2009 as Africa's major trading partner, however both these countries remain far behind the level of trade volumes with the EU total. Some OECD members (for instance, those who were not members of the OECD's Development Assistance Committee a decade ago) such as Korea and Turkey, have seen their own trade with Africa surge rapidly over recent years.

 

Sources

Further information
Analytical publications
Online databases
Websites
Indicator in PDF Acrobat PDF page

Table
Partner countries and regions of African merchandise trade
    Table in Excel

Figures
Partner countries and regions of African merchandise trade Figure in Excel
Partner countries and regions of
African merchandise trade
Africa's merchandise trade flows with OECD and Non-OECD partners Figure in Excel
Africa's merchandise trade flows with OECD
and Non-OECD partners