TUNIS, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- Tunisia's food trade deficit rose by 87 percent in the first seven months this year, compared with the same period of last year, the Tunisian Ministry of Agriculture announced on Wednesday.
This deficit reached 754.8 million Tunisian dinars (309.5 million U.S. dollars), accounting for 8.7 percent of the country's overall trade deficit.
According to the announcement, the widening deficit is mainly due to the 28.1-percent rise in the value of food imports, especially of raw materials, which alone accounted for 77 percent of all imports.
With regard to exports, the announcement noted a 13.3-percent growth following a strong performance of Tunisian dates export, which increased the yields of this product by 14 percent to 361 million Tunisian dinars (148 million dollars).
In the first seven months of 2017, the value of food exports accounted for 9.5 percent of total domestic goods exports, compared with 9.8 percent during the same period in 2016.