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However, while the levels of imports declined, the value of total imports approached the value of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) between 2001 and 2002.
The review shows that though the balance of trade figure was still negative, the movement of imports and exports levels resulted in an improvement in the balance of trade.
Total exports for 2001 amounted to US$ 490.3 million or 81.4 percent of GDP. In 2002, the value of total exports increased, amounting to US$494.9 million. In terms of a percentage of GDP however, total exports in 2002 accounted for 80.1 percent.
In 2001 and 2002, two-thirds of Guyana's export earnings came from the exporting of six products, gold, sugar, shrimp, rice, timber and bauxite. Three of these commodities, gold, sugar and timber, recorded a positive growth in exports between the period under review.
The other three sectors experienced a fall in export earnings, the worst of which was the bauxite sector, which had a dramatic fall in export earnings of 42 percent.
Gold contributed over a quarter of total export earnings and over one-fifth of GDP in both years.
Sugar was Guyana's second largest export in terms of value. Together the two commodities accounted for approximately half of Guyana's total exports.
In terms of trading partners, the United States was Guyana's most significant trading partner, both in terms of the value of imports received from the US and goods exported from Guyana for 2001 and 2002.
In 2002, one-quarter of Guyana's total exports (by Value) went to the US. This was a smaller share than in 2001 where 31 percent of total exports was sold to the US.
In 2001, 37 percent of Guyana's imports came from the United States. This figure fell to 35 percent in 2002.
In terms of Regional trade, 15 percent of Guyana's total exports was directed to sister CARCICOM States in 2001. In 2002, the CARICOM market increased in importance for Guyana, accounting for 23 percent of Guyana's total exports.
Guyana's exports continue to be dominated by the agriculture and mining sectors. Expansion in these areas, particularly in gold and sugar, combined with fairly low inflation rate, has enabled Guyana's economy to enjoy a moderate economic growth rate.