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Foreign Trade in Figures

Foreign trade plays a strategic role in the economy of Guinea-Bissau, accounting for 44% of its GDP, according to the latest World Bank data. The country is heavily dependent on cashew nuts, which account for approximately 90% of merchandise exports, determining economic performance. As per imports, they are led by refined petroleum, other steel bars, rice, flavored water, and beer (data OEC).

Guinea Bissau's exports are almost entirely directed towards India (92%), followed by Cote d'Ivoire (2.4%), Togo (2.2%), and the Netherlands (1.3%). Imports mainly come from Portugal (34%), Senegal (21.9%), China (14%), Netherlands (5.7%), and Spain (3.3%). The country introduced a Common External Tariff (CET) in early 2000, in collaboration with other countries of the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU). Guinea Bissau is also a member of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). The government is seeking to strengthen its relations with several countries and organisations in order to promote foreign trade. Government reforms such as price liberalisation, as well as privatisation and structural adjustment programs are expected to impact international trade in the long term. However, a serious lack of infrastructure, political instability and high commodities costs are obstacles to trade development.

Guinea Bissau’s trade balance is structurally in deficit, and it worsened in recent years. According to WTO, in 2022 the country imported USD 474 million worth of goods, exporting only USD 213 million (+15% and -29% year-on-year, respectively). In the same year, Guinea Bissau imported USD 157 million of services while its exports amounted to USD 33 million. As per the World Bank, the 2023 cashew campaign encountered various challenges, such as shipping container shortages, smuggling, disruptions stemming from legislative elections, and weak international demand. These factors collectively limited exports to only 168,000 tons in 2023, despite a production output of 260,000 tons.

 
Foreign Trade Indicators 20192020202120222023
Imports of Goods (million USD) 385361412471588
Exports of Goods (million USD) 249214300245233
Imports of Services (million USD) 167132168157n/a
Exports of Services (million USD) 43193533n/a
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 14-3n/an/an/a
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 9-15n/an/an/a
Trade Balance (million USD) -86-93-50n/an/a
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 5544n/an/an/a
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 3529n/an/an/a
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 2014n/an/an/a

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

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To go further, check out our service Import controls and Export Controls

To go further, check out our service Import-Export Flows

 

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List of tariffs and local taxes that apply to your product on our service Customs Duties

 

Trade Compliance

International Conventions
Member of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
International Economic Cooperation
Member of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)

Member of West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA)

Member of Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD)

Useful Resources
National Organisation of Intellectual Property
You can contact the General Directorate of Industrial Property by Email.
 
 
 

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Latest Update: May 2024