Fertilizers, building materials and packaging helped drive SR128 billion ($34.13 billion) in non-oil Saudi exports to Africa between 2019 and 2023, it has been announced.
A release from the Saudi Press Agency has set out how crucial trade with the continent is for the Kingdom as it seeks to diversify its economy in line with the Vision 2030 strategy.
The African market was described as an “important station” on Saudi Arabia’s journey to becoming a major player in the global trade arena, with a potential economy size of $3 trillion.
“For this reason, the Saudi Export Development Authority (Saudi Exports) has taken a serious path towards the African continent, responding to the needs of its diverse markets and its future aspirations,” said SPA.
The chemicals and polymers sector topped the export value list for the period between 2019 and November 2023, according to the release, exceeding SR83 billion.
The building materials sector followed with exports exceeding SR10 billion, with the packaging industry ranked third with a value of SR9 billion.
The highest exported products were polypropylene, polyethylene and fertilizers.
Egypt, Algeria, South Africa, topped the list of African countries importing Saudi products, followed by Morocco, Sudan, Kenya and Nigeria.
The number of African countries to which exports were made reached 55.
To continue boosting this trade, Saudi Exports intends to participate in a range of events on the continent this year, including the African Food Exhibition 2024, the Pack Process Middle East and Africa Exhibition 2024 in Egypt, the African Construction Exhibition 2024 in Kenya, and the GITEX Africa Exhibition 2024 in Morocco.
Trade missions are also being organized to a range of countries, including South Africa, Kenya, and Egypt, as well as Morocco and Libya, with the participation of a group of Saudi companies.
“Saudi Exports is keen to empower exporters and solve all the challenges they face in their journey to the African market, as it worked in cooperation with the relevant authorities, to address more than 270 challenges faced by exporters to Africa, most notably customs and non-tariff restrictions, and financial and logistical challenges,” said the SPA report.