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Australia Remains Top Investment Partner

Embargoed until 10:45am – 28 September 2006

Australia Remains Top Investment Partner

Australia and the United States of America (USA) continue to be New Zealand’s top two investment partners, Statistics New Zealand said today. Together, they accounted for $49.0 billion (46.9 percent) of New Zealand’s total investment abroad and $110.5 billion (47.1 percent) of foreign investment in New Zealand, at 31 March 2006.

The other significant destinations for New Zealand’s investment abroad at 31 March 2006 were the United Kingdom (UK), Switzerland and Singapore. Their combined contribution to New Zealand’s total investment abroad was $20.4 billion, up $10.3 billion from 31 March 2005.

Besides Australia and USA, the other significant source of foreign investment in New Zealand was the UK.

At 31 March 2006, UK accounted for $36.0 billion of the total foreign investment in New Zealand, up $5.5 billion from 31 March 2005.

Australia continued to be New Zealand’s number one investment partner. Direct investment relationships (those where there is ownership of 10 percent or more) are a key feature of the investment relationship between New Zealand and Australia. Of New Zealand’s total investment in Australia at 31 March 2006, 37.4 percent ($9.3 billion) was direct investment in Australia. On the same date, of the total Australian investment in New Zealand, 57.4 percent ($39.4 billion) was direct investment.

Statistics showing New Zealand industries that have international financial assets and liabilities were also released today. The finance and insurance industry continues to hold the largest proportion of New Zealand’s overseas assets (70.3 percent) and overseas liabilities (61.8 percent). Between 31 March 2005 and 31 March 2006, overseas liabilities held by this industry increased $18.1 billion. This reflects an increase in borrowing by New Zealand banks from abroad for domestic lending, as part of their financial intermediary role.

Geoff Bascand
Acting Government Statistician

ENDS

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