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Trade Deficit Reaches Record Level

Overseas Merchandise Trade: August 2005

27 September 2005

Trade Deficit Reaches Record Level

The trade balance for the August 2005 month is a deficit of $1,105 million, or 46.8 percent of exports, Statistics New Zealand said today. The average trade balance for August for the past 10 years is a deficit of $341 million (16.4 percent of exports). The deficit for August 2005 is the highest deficit recorded for any month.

Imports of merchandise goods for August 2005 are provisionally valued at $3,465 million, which is $391 million (12.7 percent) higher than for August 2004. The main contributors to the increased imports value are higher values for ships and boats; mechanical machinery and equipment, particularly plant machinery and computers; and petroleum, particularly crude oil. The value for imports is the highest for any month on record.

Exports of merchandise goods for August 2005 are provisionally valued at $2,360 million, which is $6 million (0.2 percent) lower than for August 2004. The main contributors to the reduced exports value are lower values for fruit, particularly kiwifruit; and meat, particularly beef cuts. Offsetting these lower values is a higher value for milk powder, butter and cheese.

Brian Pink
Government Statistician

END

There is a companion Hot Off The Press information release published – Overseas Merchandise Trade: August 2005.

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