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As a result of under invoicing by some importers and exporters, to reduce tariff and lower their profits for tax payments evation, an exact estimated statistics of African export value cannot be ascertained.

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) reports the magnitude of export illicit financial flow to be estimated at $40 billion. With gold export accounting for 77% of the $40 billion, diamond 12%, platinum 6%, and other commodities 5%.

A friendly estimate of collective export statistics of Africa to China alone in the year 2020, was said to be $62 billion. And the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCFTA), is expected to increase Africa’s export by $560 billion. Which would have a significant impact, on the value of export.

Products with high value

A list of commodities extracted from Africa, are not only of value by their need across the globe, but the financial significance they wield. Such are,


Cocoa is found mostly in Africa. Over 70% of cocoa production globally, are from Africa. With Cote d’ ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon being lead producers. Known for it’s pharmaceutical benefits, it is also used in the cosmetic, energy, and notably food and beverage industry. And garners high demand, from Netherland, USA, Malaysia, and Germany. Where it has a collective total import value of over $5 billion annually.


A precious metal, is one of the many minable resources found in Africa. With Algeria having the largest reserve in Africa, at 174 metric tons which is largely unexplored. As compared to Ghane, the continent’s largest producers with 117.6 metric tons. Other major gold exporting countries in Africa are South Africa, Mali, Burkina Faso, and Nigeria. Gold is used in the medical, automotive, aerospace, jewelry and medals industry. And are in high demand in Switzerland, India, U.K, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, USA, Germany, UAE, and Thailand, with a collective total import value of about $333 billion.


A natural fiber from cellulose, can be found in good quantity in Sub – Saharan African countries. With Cote d’ ivoire, Burkina Faso, Benin, and Mali as major producers. Cotton is majorly used in the textile industry. Also cosmetics, manufacturing sub sector (plastic), stationery and fishing industry. They are in high demand in China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Turkey, Pakistan, Indonesia, South Korea, Italy, USA, Mexico, Germany, Portugal, Russia, India, and Sri Lanka. With a total import value to these countries at about $40 billion.


A renewable mineral resources, and one of many resources that can produce other resources such as Chrysocolla, and Malachite, is found in few African countries like Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, and South Africa. Used in the construction, electronics, power, and automotive industry, rakes a high demand from Canada, Mexico, South Korea, Germany, and Peru. With a total import value of copper to these countries valued at $1.4 billion.

Foodstuffs And Agricultural Produce

As confirmed by an International Monetary Fund (IMF) article in September 2022, African food prices are indeed soaring amid high import reliance. World bank estimates the African food market value, and other agricultural commodities to create $1 trillion opportunity by 2030. Some of the foodstuffs and agricultural produce in high demand are, Ofada Rice, Maize, Soybeans, Palm Oil, Sugar, Coffee, Cashew, Spices, Melon, Tubers, Maté, Fruits, Oil Seeds, Meat, Wheat, Sesame Seeds, Textile e.t.c

With South Africa and Nigeria topping the list of foodstuffs and agro export, Africa’s food systems, was said to be valued at US$313 billion. Generally, the export industry is favourably unexploited. Leaving opportunities to as many that seeks to explore it’d depth.

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