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Trade Profile

Foreign Trade in Figures

Mozambique is open to foreign trade, which represents nearly 110% of the country's GDP (2012-2014 average). The current Government's trade policy aims to implement structural reforms to customs duties, customs and VAT procedures to encourage exports.

At the moment, customs duties remain high; however, there are non-tariff barriers in the country. Additionally, the Government seeks to reform its trade regulations to improve its business climate. Mozambique could become one of the largest exporters of natural gas in the world by 2020 (the country hosts the third largest reserve in Africa) thanks to the discovery of new reserves. Lastly, the planned construction of natural gas plants as well as a new dam should allow the country to increase its electricity exports to neighbouring countries. Export Infrastructure (railroads, deep water ports, liquefied natural gas plants) are also under construction. The State is expected to start exporting natural gas and coal to Asia in 2020.

Mozambique's trade balance is in deficit and should remain so until coal and gas exports to Asia begin. The country needs to import goods and services to develop its infrastructure (gas, transport). As a result, its current account balance in structurally in deficit. The country primarily exports natural resources (aluminium, hydrocarbons, coking coal, coal, titanium, gemstones), tobacco, sugar, etc. to the Netherlands, South Africa, Singapour, India, the UK and China. Mozambique imports hydrocarbons, metal products, vehicles, machinery and equipment, chemical products, foodstuffs (rice, wheat) and medications from South Africa, Bahrain, China, the Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates, Portugal and India.

Foreign Trade Indicators 20112012201320142015
Imports of Goods (million USD) 6,3128,68810,0998,7478,293
Exports of Goods (million USD) 3,6043,8564,0244,7254,195
Imports of Services (million USD) 2,2094,4483,8573,6243,285
Exports of Services (million USD) 366792645725675
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 26622915-12
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 1713216-5
Trade Balance (million USD) -2,249-4,048-4,357-4,035-4,163
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 88111114118100
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 5578848568
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 3332303332

Source: WTO – World Trade Organisation ; World Bank - 2016.

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
Netherlands 29.8%
South Africa 18.3%
India 10.6%
Singapore 4.6%
Italy 3.1%
Belgium 2.8%
China 2.7%
United Kingdom 2.5%
Zimbabwe 2.5%
Namibia 2.2%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
South Africa 30.1%
China 12.5%
Netherlands 7.3%
Portugal 5.8%
Bahrain 5.2%
United Arab Emirates 4.3%
India 4.0%
France 3.4%
Japan 3.1%
United States 2.5%

Source: Comtrade, Last Available Data


Main Products

3.2 bn USD of products exported in 2015
Bars, rods and profiles, of aluminium, n.e.s. 28.5%
Coke and semi-coke of coal, of lignite or of peat, whether or not agglomerated; retort carbon 12.1%
Electrical energy 9.9%
Unmanufactured tobacco; tobacco refuse 9.2%
Petroleum gas and other gaseous hydrocarbons 7.2%
Unwrought aluminium 4.5%
Cane or beet sugar and chemically pure sucrose, in solid form 3.7%
Titanium ores and concentrates 3.4%
Precious stones and semi-precious stones, whether or not worked or graded, but not strung, mounted or set, ungraded precious stones and semi-precious stones, temporarily strung for convenience of transport (excl. diamonds and imitation precious stones and semi-precious stones) 3.1%
Niobium, tantalum, vanadium or zirconium ores and concentrates 1.1%
7.9 bn USD of products imported in 2015
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 9.0%
Fishing vessels; factory ships and other vessels for processing or preserving fishery products (excl. fishing boats for sport) 6.7%
Unwrought aluminium 5.9%
Motor vehicles for the transport of goods, incl. chassis with engine and cab 4.1%
Medicaments consisting of mixed or unmixed products for therapeutic or prophylactic uses, put up in measured doses incl. those in the form of transdermal administration or in forms or packings for retail sale (excl. goods of heading 3002, 3005 or 3006) 3.5%
Electrical energy 3.1%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702) 2.0%
Rice 1.9%
Structures and parts of structures e.g., bridges and bridge-sections, lock-gates, towers, lattice masts, roofs, roofing frameworks, doors and windows and their frames and thresholds for doors, shutters, balustrades, pillars and columns, of iron or steel; plates, rods, angles, shapes, sections, tubes and the like, prepared for use in structures, of iron or steel (excl. prefabricated buildings of heading 9406) 1.8%
Wheat and meslin 1.8%

Source: Comtrade, Last Available Data


Main Services

0.7 bn USD of services exported in 2015
Insurance services
Other business services
Communications services
Financial services
3.0 bn USD of services imported in 2015
Other business services
Construction services
Insurance services
Government services
Computer and information services
Royalties and license fees
Financial services
Cultural and recreational services

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, Last Available Data


Trade Compliance

International Conventions
Member of World Trade Organisation
Main International Economic Cooperation
Member of Southern African Development Community (SADC)

Member of African Union

Useful Resources
Mozambique Customs
National Organisation of Intellectual Property
The Industrial Property Institute (IPI).


Learn more about How to Export to Mozambique on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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Last Updates: June 2017