African trade statistics suffer from errors of commission and omission. A quarter-century ago, Alexander Yeats (1990) compared receipts of importers and exporters and concluded that the data could not be used to determine the magnitude, direction, or composition of trade. The only fact to be safely deduced from the evidence was that the statistics were plagued by widespread smuggling and/or underreporting. More than two decades later, despite improvement in external economic conditions, trade statistics continue to be lacking in quality.
How to Cite This Article
"On the accuracy of trade and GDP statistics in Africa: Errors of commission and omission,"
Journal of African Trade: Vol. 1:
1, Article 4.