Exports from Colombia were up by 22.5% in the first half of the year compared to the same period in 2017, according to the National Administrative Department of Statistics (DANE).
In terms of overall value, Colombia exported nearly $20.5 billion USD of goods and services in the first six months of the year, well above the $17.9 billion USD registered in the first half of 2017.
The biggest reason for the rise is the surge in the global price of oil.
While Brent crude oil spot prices averaged roughly $50 per barrel in the second quarter of 2017, they soared to an average of around $75 per barrel in the second quarter of 2018, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Overall, exports from the wider extractive industry, which includes oil, totaled $11.8 billion USD — nearly 60% of nation’s overall export value in the past six months at more than. This was an increase of 22.7% for the industry over the $9.6 billion USD in the first six months of 2017.
Manufacturing, with $4.1 billion USD in exports, is also up considerably with a year-over-year rise of 17.0%. Agriculture, food, and beverage exports, valued at 3.9 billion USD, rose by 3.4% in this six-month stretch.
For the month of June, Colombian exports totaled just over $3.33 billion USD — up 15.9% from the $2.87 billion USD in June 2017. Oil and the extractive industry rose by 32.1% for the month, year-over-year, and manufacturing rose by 7.7%.
The increases highlight the ongoing improvement in the Colombian economy, which hit an eight-year low in 2016 with GDP growth of just 1.8%. According to the World Bank, Colombian exports totaled just $31 billion USD in 2016.
These first half numbers put the nation nearly two-thirds of the way to that full-year total in just six months.
Photo: The Port of Barranquilla. (Photo credit: Puerto de Barranquilla)