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Exports of primary products continue to decline
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  27 June 2012

Overseas Merchandise Trade: May 2012  –  Media Release

The value of exported goods fell $202 million (4.4 percent) in May 2012, compared with May 2011, led by primary products, Statistics New Zealand said today.

Exports of meat and edible offal, logs, wood, and wood articles, and dairy products all showed year on year decreases for May 2012, as they did in April 2012. The trends for those commodities, which reflect how values change over time, have been falling for at least six months.

“New Zealand’s top three export commodity groups were all down in May 2012, which is consistent with their recent trends,” industry and labour statistics manager Neil Kelly said. “Those falls in commodity values meant the trade surplus was lower than in the previous three May months.”

Imports rose $46 million (1.1 percent). Capital and consumption goods rose and intermediate goods fell.

The trade balance for May 2012 was a surplus of $301 million (6.8 percent of exports). This follows surpluses of $906 million in May 2009, $770 million in May 2010, and $550 million in May 2011.

For the year ended May 2012, there was an annual trade deficit of $805 million (1.7 percent of exports).

Geoff Bascand
Government Statistician

27 June 2012

 END

For media enquiries contact: 
Neil Kelly 
Christchurch (03) 964 8700
Email: overseastrade@stats.govt.nz

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