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Import Growth Continues

Overseas Merchandise Trade (Imports): January 2001

The value of merchandise imports for January 2001 is $2,229 million, according to latest figures released by Statistics New Zealand. The monthly imports trend grew at a steady rate throughout 2000 and this growth has continued in January 2001.

The value of imports for the year ended January 2001 is $31,194 million, up 15.1 per cent from the previous January year. Intermediate goods (which include crude oil) rose 25.8 per cent in value, while consumption goods rose 13.6 per cent and capital goods rose 11.5 per cent. Excluding items valued at $100 million or more each (such as large aircraft and ships), the annual increase in merchandise imports was 17.0 per cent ($4,457 million).

The commodity with the largest value increase for the year ended January 2001 was petroleum and related products, mostly caused by crude oil price increases. The quantity of crude oil imported rose 10.1 per cent from the previous January year, while the average price per tonne rose 87.5 per cent.

The early estimate for January 2001 merchandise exports is $2,330 million, giving a merchandise trade surplus of $101 million for the month, compared with a surplus of $2 million for January 2000. Detailed statistics for January 2001 exports will be released on 14 March 2001.



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