Bolivia’s Top 10 Imports

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Bolivia imported US$9.3 billion worth of goods from around the globe in 2017, down by -0.5% since 2013 but up by 10.4% from 2016 to 2017.

Bolivian imports represent 0.06% of total global imports which totaled $16.054 trillion one year earlier in 2016.

From a continental perspective, $4.1 billion or 43.9% of Bolivia’s total imports by value were purchased from Latin American countries (excluding Mexico) plus the Caribbean. Asian trade partners supplied 31.4% of import sales to Bolivia while 12.7% worth of goods originated from Europe. At 11.7%, a smaller percentage came from North America.

Given Bolivia’s population of 11.1 million people, its total $9.3 billion in 2017 imports translates to roughly $840 in yearly product demand from every person in the country.

Bolivia’s Top 10 Imports

Top 10

The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in Bolivia’s import purchases during 2017 at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into Bolivia.

  1. Machinery including computers: US$1.7 billion (17.7% of total imports)
  2. Vehicles: $1.2 billion (12.9%)
  3. Mineral fuels including oil: $983 million (10.6%)
  4. Electrical machinery, equipment: $702.5 million (7.6%)
  5. Plastics, plastic articles: $433.3 million (4.7%)
  6. Iron, steel: $428.7 million (4.6%)
  7. Other chemical goods: $325.6 million (3.5%)
  8. Articles of iron or steel: $303.9 million (3.3%)
  9. Pharmaceuticals: $193.3 million (2.1%)
  10. Rubber, rubber articles: $163.4 million (1.8%)

Bolivia’s top 10 imports accounted for over two-thirds (68.6%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.

Leading the increase in value from 2016 to 2017, the fastest-growing product category was mineral fuels including oil thanks mostly to Bolivia’s accelerating purchases of refined petroleum oils. In second place was machinery including computers (up 28%) then iron or steel items (up 21.3%).

The sole decliner was the plastics and plastic articles category via a -2.7% reduction from 2016 to 2017.

Please note that the results listed above are at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level. Information presented under other virtual folder tabs is at the more granular 4-digit level.

Machinery

In 2017, Bolivian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of machinery .

  1. Heavy machinery (bulldozers, excavators, road rollers): US$194.9 million (up 0.8% from 2016)
  2. Miscellaneous machinery: $148.8 million (up 115.5%)
  3. Lifting/loading machinery: $117.1 million (up 7.6%)
  4. Turbo-jets: $90.9 million (up 60.1%)
  5. Refrigerators, freezers: $67.2 million (up 6.8%)
  6. Sort/screen/washing machinery: $61.8 million (down -6.5%)
  7. Centrifuges, filters and purifiers: $57.6 million (up 52.3%)
  8. Air or vacuum pumps: $52.5 million (up 32.2%)
  9. Taps, valves, similar appliances: $48.1 million (up 2.6%)
  10. Steam/vapor turbines: $47.7 million (up 8,150%)

Among these import subcategories, Bolivia’s purchases of steam/vapor turbines: (up 8,150%), miscellaneous machinery: (up 115.5%) and turbo-jets: (up 60.1%) grew at the fastest pace from 2016 to 2017.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of machinery-related imports among Bolivian businesses and consumers.

Vehicles

In 2017, Bolivian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of vehicles and related products.

  1. Cars: US$460.5 million (up 13.7% from 2016)
  2. Trucks: $270.9 million (down -7.2%)
  3. Public-transport vehicles: $150.4 million (up 18.1%)
  4. Tractors: $117.9 million (up 4.2%)
  5. Automobile parts/accessories: $80.7 million (up 6.7%)
  6. Motorcycles: $47.4 million (down -13.5%)
  7. Special purpose vehicles: $29.9 million (up 16.2%)
  8. Trailers: $15.2 million (down -45.7%)
  9. Bicycles, other non-motorized cycles: $7.5 million (up 21.9%)
  10. Motorcycle parts/accessories: $7.4 million (up 12.1%)

Among these import subcategories, Bolivia’s purchases of bicycles and other non-motorized cycles (up 21.9%), public-transport vehicles (up 18.1%) then special purpose vehicles (up 16.2%) grew at the fastest pace from 2016 to 2017.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of vehicles-related imports among Bolivian businesses and consumers.

Fuel

In 2017, Bolivian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of mineral fuels-related products.

  1. Processed petroleum oils: US$928.8 million (up 31.5% from 2016)
  2. Petroleum oil residues: $24.5 million (down -39.6%)
  3. Asphalt/petroleum bitumen mixes: $23.9 million (up 78.4%)
  4. Petroleum jelly, mineral waxes: $2.8 million (down -4.1%)
  5. Natural bitumen, asphalt, shale: $1.5 million (down -55.5%)
  6. Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $1.2 million (up 42.6%)
  7. Peat: $159,000 (down -6.5%)
  8. Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation): $111,000 (up 177.5%)
  9. Petroleum gases: $29,000 (down -59.2%)
  10. Distilled tar: $10,000 (down 0.0%)

Among these import subcategories, Bolivia’s purchases of high temperature distilled coal tar oils (up 177.5%), asphalt or petroleum bitumen mixes (up 78.4%) and coal including solid fuels made from coal (up 42.6%) grew at the fastest pace from 2016 to 2017.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of mineral fuels-related imports among Bolivian businesses and consumers.

Electronics

In 2017, Bolivian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electrical products.

  1. Phone system devices including smartphones: US$168.6 million (down -17.5% from 2016)
  2. Insulated wire/cable: $66.9 million (up 8.5%)
  3. Electrical converters/power units: $61.4 million (up 14%)
  4. TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $41.2 million (up 54.2%)
  5. Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels: $34.9 million (up 25.4%)
  6. Lower-voltage switches, fuses: $26.5 million (down -6.2%)
  7. Electric storage batteries: $26.3 million (up 16.3%)
  8. Unrecorded sound media: $23.8 million (down -7.2%)
  9. Electric water heaters, hair dryers: $23.5 million (up 18.4%)
  10. Video recording equipment: $20.7 million (up 542.7%)

Among these import subcategories, Bolivia’s purchases of video recording equipment (up 542.7%), TV receivers, monitors or projectors (up 54.2%) and electrical or optical circuit boards and panels (up 25.4%) grew at the fastest pace from 2016 to 2017.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of mineral fuels-related imports among Bolivian businesses and consumers.



 

See also Bolivia’s Top 10 Exports, Bolivia’s Top Trading Partners and Top South American Export Countries

Research Sources:
Forbes Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Investopedia, Net Importer Definition. Accessed on August 20, 2018

The World Factbook, Field Listing: Imports – Commodities, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Wikipedia, Bolivia. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Wikipedia, Airlines of Bolivia. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Wikipedia, Category: Banks of Bolivia. Accessed on August 20, 2018

Wikipedia, Oil and Gas Companies of Bolivia. Accessed on August 20, 2018