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Car imports reach record high in June
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  26 July 2017

Overseas Merchandise Trade: June 2017  –  Media Release

Car imports topped half a billion dollars for the first time in June 2017, Stats NZ said today. Total monthly imports were valued at $4.5 billion, up $319 million (7.7 percent) from June 2016.

Imports of cars led the increase in total imports in June 2017, up $118 million (31 percent) to reach $505 million. New motor cars led this increase, up $86 million in value. This was 2,566 more new cars than in June 2016, and was the 11th consecutive increase in value when compared with the same month of the previous year.

Milk powder, butter, and cheese continue to bolster exports in June

Exports rose $454 million (11 percent) when compared with June 2016, to reach $4.7 billion in June 2017 and boosted by dairy sales, especially to China.

Milk powder, butter, and cheese led the rise, up $372 million (45 percent) to $1.2 billion and up 11 percent in quantity. Dairy exports to China were up both in value (102 percent) and quantity, (63 percent) to reach $373 million.

“The milk powder, butter, and cheese group continues to be a key export commodity, and accounts for over a quarter of our total exports,” international statistics senior manager Daria Kwon said.

The trade balance for June 2017 was a surplus of $242 million (5.1 percent of exports). This is the fourth consecutive surplus.

The annual trade deficit for the year ended June 2017 was $3.7 billion, compared with the $3.8 billion shortfall in the year ended May 2017.

Seasonally adjusted June 2017 quarter exports up over a billion dollars

When compared with the March 2017 quarter, the seasonally adjusted value of exported goods rose $1.2 billion (9.9 percent), to reach $13.5 billion in the latest quarter. Milk powder, butter, and cheese rose 22 percent in value, and 20 percent in quantity.

The value of imported goods was up 2.9 percent ($396 million) in the June 2017 quarter, to $14 billion.

The trade deficit in the June 2017 quarter was $479 million (3.5 percent of exports). This is the 13th consecutive quarterly trade deficit, and follows the largest quarterly shortfall in the March 2017 quarter ($1.3 billion).

Ends

For media enquiries contact: Dave Adair, 03 964 8976, info@stats.govt.nz
Authorised by Teresa Dickinson, Acting Government Statistician, 26 July 2017

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