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Milk powder to China leads to high export levels in 2013
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  31 January 2014

Overseas Merchandise Trade: December 2013  –  Media Release

Milk powder exports, particularly to China, dominated the total goods exported for the year ended December 2013, Statistics New Zealand said today. This led to many new record highs, such as export values for the month, quarter, and year for the grouping milk powder, butter, and cheese.

“For 2013, the value of goods we exported rose by $2.0 billion – to reach $48.1 billion – and most of this increase was from milk powder,” industry and labour statistics manager Louise Holmes-Oliver said. “Almost half of our milk powder exports went to China.”

Goods exported to China in the year ended December 2013 were valued at $10.0 billion, of which $4.0 billion was milk powder. This is the highest-ever value of milk powder exported to China for any year.

“China became our top annual export destination in 2013, a spot Australia had held since the year ended September 1989,” Louise Holmes-Oliver said. “For imports, China’s been our main partner since December 2011.”

Imports for the December 2013 year were up $1.1 billion, to $48.3 billion.

December 2013 quarter

For the December 2013 quarter, seasonally adjusted exports rose 10 percent (to $13.4 billion), and seasonally adjusted imports fell 2.8 percent (to $12.3 billion) from the September 2013 quarter.

The seasonally adjusted trade balance for the December 2013 quarter was a surplus of $1.1 billion (8.0 percent of exports) – the first surplus over $1.0 billion since the series began.

December 2013 month

For the December 2013 month, export values increased $658 million (16 percent) compared with December 2012. Imports increased $669 million (19 percent). The trade balance for the December 2013 month was a surplus of $523 million (11 percent of exports).

New Zealand's international trade

New Zealand’s international trade is made up of trade in goods and services. Overseas merchandise trade statistics measure the goods component of international trade. For a complete picture, this release should be viewed with international trade in services figures, released as part of Balance of Payments and International Investment Position.

Ends

 
For media enquiries contact: Authorised by:

Louise Holmes-Oliver 
Christchurch 03 964 8700
Email: info@stats.govt.nz
Published 31 January 2014

Liz MacPherson
Government Statistician
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