The mining industry is one of Namibia’s key sources of income and provides more than half of the country’s foreign exchange income. Namibia is on of the largest producers of uranium in the world. Other minerals extracted include silver, copper, lead, zinc, tungsten and some of the world's highest-quality diamonds.
Livestock dominates the agricultural sector, with huge cattle and game farms making up the largest part of the industry. A substantial proportion of the workforce is engaged in subsistence farming of crops such as wheat, maize and millet but their yield is under constant threat from desertification. Even in a good year, Namibia only grows around 50% of the cereal its population consumes and has to import the remainder. Namibia also has an active commercial fishing industry centred around Walvis Bay and its sardine-packed waters. Manufacturing is mainly devoted to processing raw materials and agricultural produce.
Tourism, particularly eco-tourism, is a key part of the economy and one of the country’s biggest employers. Although it is dominated by the white Afrikaaner population, the industry is increasingly geared towards benefitting the local people who live in remote safari areas via initiatives such as conservancies and training schemes for would-be chefs, guides and hotel managers.
Namibia’s biggest trading partner is South Africa, followed by the UK, the USA, Angola, the Netherlands and Spain, and generally involves the exchange of raw materials for manufactured goods. Recent economic policy has seen many former state enterprises transferred to the private sector. The economy has performed reasonably well during the last decade but inflation has recently accelerated. Annual growth in 2012 was 4.6% with inflation at 6.3%. Official unemployment figures hover around 50%, although this does include subsistence farmers and tribal hunter-gatherers.