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Australia, USA, UK Still Main Investment Partners

Australia, USA and the UK Still Our Main Investment Partners

New Zealand's most important investment relationships continue to be with Australia, the United States of America, and the United Kingdom, latest Statistics New Zealand analysis of international investment relationships shows. Together, these three countries were the source of 61.5 percent of the $177.9 billion foreign investment in New Zealand at 31 March 2003. This compares with 54.8 percent at 31 March 2002.

Other countries identified as significant sources of foreign investment in New Zealand at 31 March 2003 were Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Singapore and Switzerland.

Together these countries contributed 16.6 percent ($29.5 billion) of the total foreign investment in New Zealand at 31 March 2003.

Australia and the United States were the destination for 52.9 percent of New Zealand's total investment abroad of $77.5 billion. This figure is down from the 51.0 percent recorded at 31 March 2002. Germany and the United Kingdom were the destination for a further 21.4 percent of New Zealand's investment abroad. Other significant destination countries for New Zealand investment abroad were Hong Kong, Japan, The Netherlands, Singapore and Switzerland, together contributing 8.6 percent ($6.7 billion) of New Zealand's investment abroad.

Australia remains New Zealand's single most important source and destination of direct investment (investment where an ownership relationship of 10 percent or more is established).

Australia was the destination for 52.5 percent of the total $13.4 billion of New Zealand direct investment abroad, and 37.7 percent of the total $52.5 billion of foreign direct investment in New Zealand.

New Zealand's main destination for portfolio investment (shareholdings of less than 10 percent and debt securities) abroad at 31 March 2003 was the United States of America, accounting for 50.6 percent of the $24.9 billion total of portfolio investment abroad. New Zealand banks and fund managers are the main investors. The United Kingdom and the United States of America are the main portfolio investors in New Zealand, accounting for 40.8 percent and 15.9 percent, respectively, of the $65.0 billion of total foreign portfolio investment in New Zealand.

The category 'other investment' mainly comprises loans, deposits and trade credits. Of the $21.9 billion of 'other investment' abroad at 31 March 2003, $7.5 billion (34.3 percent) was invested in the United States, 21.2 percent in Germany, and 12.6 percent in Australia. The largest sources of foreign 'other investment' in New Zealand were Australia (23.8 percent), and the United States of America (16.6 percent). The United Kingdom, Singapore and Hong Kong were also significant providers of 'other investment' funds to New Zealand.

Statistics showing New Zealand's total international assets and liabilities disaggregated by industry were also released today. These show that, at 31 March 2003, the finance and insurance industry continues to be the most significant holder of New Zealand assets abroad, and the most significant recipient of foreign investment in New Zealand. This industry's overseas assets comprised 62.7 percent of New Zealand's total overseas assets, and 58.1 percent of the liabilities.

Significant contributors to both assets and liabilities were government administration and defence (in the form of official overseas reserves and government overseas debt respectively), and the manufacturing industry.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

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