Venezuela’s Top 10 Imports

Venezuelan sunset (courtesy of Pixabay.com)

Venezuelan sunset

Products imported into the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela totaled an estimated US$10.6 billion in 2018. That dollar amount reflects a -73.2% decline since 2014 but a 0.2% uptick from 2017 to 2018.

Given Venezuela’s population of 31.7 million people, its total $10.6 billion in estimated imports for 2018 translates to roughly $350 in yearly product demand from every person in the South American nation.

Venezuela’s Top 10 Imports

Top 10

The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in Venezuela’s import purchases during 2018. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into Venezuela.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: US$4.3 billion (40.4% of total imports)
  2. Cereals: $897 million (8.5%)
  3. Machinery including computers: $871.7 million (8.2%)
  4. Electrical machinery, equipment: $440.8 million (4.2%)
  5. Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $273 million (2.6%)
  6. Organic chemicals: $249.7 million (2.4%)
  7. Aircraft, spacecraft: $203.8 million (1.9%)
  8. Vehicles: $181.1 million (1.7%)
  9. Plastics, plastic articles: $179.4 million (1.7%)
  10. Sugar, sugar confectionery: $170.3 million (1.6%)

Venezuela’s top 10 imports accounted for almost two-thirds (64.8%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.

Imported aircraft and spacecraft (up 138.7%) led all categories value increases from 2017 to 2018.

In second place were Venezuela’s imports of mineral fuels including oil thanks to its 112.7% rise, ahead of the 21.9% appreciation for the animal or vegetable fats, oils and waxes.

Vehicles led the decliners via a -51.3% reduction year over year.

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.

At the more detailed four-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level, Venezuela’s costliest imported products are refined petroleum oils (39.5% of total) followed by corn (2.9%), rice (2.8%), wheat (2.6%), aircraft and spacecraft (1.7%), ethers (1.6%) then soya-bean oil (1.5%).

Fuel

In 2018, Venezuelan importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of mineral fuels-related products.

  1. Processed petroleum oils: US$4.2 billion (up 112.1% from 2017)
  2. Petroleum gases: $79.2 million (up 762.2%)
  3. Petroleum oil residues: $19.7 million (down -8.2%)
  4. Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation): $1.6 million (down -26.4%)
  5. Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $1.2 million (down -45.7%)
  6. Petroleum jelly, mineral waxes: $705,000 (up 32.3%)
  7. Lignite: $99,000 (down -38.5%)
  8. Peat: $92,000 (down -64.1%)
  9. Coke, semi-coke: $56,000 (down -98.1%)
  10. Asphalt/petroleum bitumen mixes: $8,000 (down -93.2%)

Among these import subcategories, Venezuelan purchases of petroleum gases (up 762.2%), processed petroleum oils (up 112.1%) then petroleum jelly and mineral waxes (up 32.3%) grew from 2017 to 2018.

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

Cereals

In 2018, Venezuelan importers spent the most on the following subcategories of cereals.

  1. Corn: US$311.8 million (down -17.4% from 2017)
  2. Rice: $294.5 million (up 73.9%)
  3. Wheat: $279.3 million (up 12.4%)
  4. Buckwheat, millet, canary seed: $164,000 (down -49.1%)
  5. Oats: $39,000 (no 2017 data)

Among these import subcategories, Venezuelan purchases of rice (up 73.9%) and wheat (up 12.4%) grew from 2017 to 2018.

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

Electronics

In 2018, Venezuelan importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electrical items including consumer electronics.

  1. Phone system devices including smartphones: US$88.1 million (down -24.5% from 2017)
  2. Electrical converters/power units: $56.3 million (up 8.5%)
  3. Electrical/optical circuit boards, panels: $33.2 million (down -21.7%)
  4. Insulated wire/cable: $30.6 million (down -42.8%)
  5. TV/radio/radar device parts: $25.2 million (up 382.5%)
  6. Unrecorded sound media: $24.3 million (down -9.3%)
  7. TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $19.2 million (up 13.5%)
  8. Electric motors, generators: $16.1 million (down -19.3%)
  9. Electric generating sets, converters: $14.9 million (down -37.8%)
  10. Electrical machinery: $14.7 million (up 20.8%)

Among these import subcategories, Venezuelan purchases of TV, radio and radar device parts (up 382.5%), electrical machinery (up 20.8%) then TV receivers, monitors and projectors (up 13.5%) grew at the fastest pace from 2017 to 2018.

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

Oils

In 2018, Venezuelan importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of animal or vegetable fats and oils.

  1. Soya-bean oil: US$162.4 million (up 5.7% from 2017)
  2. Sun/safflower/cotton-seed oil: $21.9 million (up 175.3%)
  3. Palm oil: $14.0 million (down -48.8%)
  4. Fixed vegetable fats/oils: $9.7 million (up 93.3%)
  5. Animal/vegetable hydrogenated fats, oils: $4.1 million (down -67.1%)
  6. Margarine: $1.5 million (down -81.2%)
  7. Olive oil: $1.2 million (down -28.9%)
  8. Oxidized or dehydrated animal/vegetable fats, oils: $1.1 million (up 1,117%)
  9. Rape/colza/mustard oil: $322,000 (down -41.7%)
  10. Pig or poultry fat including lard: $60,000 (down -49.6%)

Among these import subcategories, Venezuelan purchases of oxidized or dehydrated animal or vegetable fats and oils (up 1,117%), sun, safflower or cotton-seed oil (up 175.3%) then fixed vegetable fats and oils (up 93.3%) grew at the fastest pace from 2017 to 2018.

These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported animal or vegetable fats and oils among Venezuelan businesses and consumers.



 

See also Venezuela’s Top 10 Exports, Refined Oil Exports by Country and Corn Exports by Country

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on April 24, 2019

International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on April 24, 2019

The World Factbook, South America: Venezuela. Accessed on April 24, 2019

Wikipedia, Venezuela. Accessed on April 24, 2019