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Continued Growth in Exports

Overseas Merchandise Trade: June 2000

Export growth is continuing at twice the rate of import growth according to latest export figures released today by Statistics New Zealand for the month of June 2000. This has resulted in a progressive reduction in the deficit in the merchandise trade balance trend. Despite this, the unadjusted June month deficit at $24 million is well below the average trade balance surplus of $154 million recorded for June months in the last 10 years. The merchandise trade balance for the year ended June 2000 was a deficit of $3,187 million.

The latest quarterly analysis suggest a steady increase in returns for most export commodities. Seasonally adjusted merchandise exports rose by 5.4 per cent in the June 2000 quarter. This follows an increase of 7.4 per cent last quarter. The rise in export values was assisted by the 1.1 per cent fall in the New Zealand dollar in the June 2000 quarter.

The seasonally adjusted export value of logs, wood and wood articles was 9.9 per cent higher in the June 2000 quarter compared with the previous quarter. The quarterly trend value has risen for the last eight quarters. The increased price of logs and continued strong demand for logs, wood and wood articles have contributed to this growth.

Seasonally adjusted exports of milk powder, butter and cheese were 2.2 per cent higher in the June 2000 quarter than in the previous quarter. The increase in value was largely due to rising milk powder prices. The export value has now recovered to the level achieved before the fall in the June 1999 quarter.

For June 2000, provisional unadjusted merchandise exports were $2,438 million compared with $2,462 million for imports.

Ian Ewing

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