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Global New Zealand – International trade, investment, and travel profile: Year ended June 2011
Key points

Global New Zealand – International Trade, Investment, and Travel Profile is a twice-yearly report co-published by Statistics New Zealand and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It uses annual data for overseas merchandise trade, the trade of services, foreign direct investment, and international travel and migration figures.

New Zealand’s merchandise exports were valued at $46.1 billion in the year ended June 2011, up 13 percent from $40.7 billion in the year ended June 2010. The largest increases in export values were in dairy and forestry and forestry products.

The total value of New Zealand’s imports for the year ended June 2011 was $45.1 billion, up 5.3 percent from $40.1 billion in the year ended June 2010. The largest increases in import values were in mineral fuels and oils, machinery, and vehicles.

The annual trade balance for the year ended June 2011 was a surplus of $999 million (2.2 percent of exports).

Exports increase led by agricultural products

New Zealand’s merchandise exports in the year ended June 2011 were valued at $46.1 billion, up $5.4 billion (13 percent) from the year ended June 2010. The majority of high-value export commodity groups increased in value compared with the same period in the previous year.

Australia continues to be New Zealand’s principal export market, receiving 22 percent ($10.3 billion) of New Zealand’s exports for the year ended June 2011. New Zealand’s second-largest export market, China, continues to grow rapidly. Exports to China have increased $1.5 billion (37 percent) from the year ended June 2010 and account for 12 percent of total exports, worth $5.6 billion. The United States is the third-largest export market, receiving 8.5 percent of total exports, worth $3.9 billion.

Exports to Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies accounted for 71 percent of New Zealand’s total exports and were worth $32.5 billion in the year ended June 2011. Exports to the European Union accounted for 11 percent ($5.2 billion) of total exports.

Exports of agricultural products

Exports of agricultural products increased $3.6 billion (16 percent) from the year ended June 2010, to $25.9 billion. The increase was led by:

  • dairy, up $2.6 billion (27 percent) to $12.3 billion, mainly due to increases in exports of:
    • concentrated milk and cream, up $1.6 billion (34 percent)
    •  butter, up $654 million (37 percent)
  • meat and meat products, up $393 million (7.3 percent) to $5.8 billion. Frozen beef was the largest contributor to the increase, up $216 million (14 percent) to $1.8 billion. Sheep meat remains the highest-value commodity, up $109 million (3.9 percent) to $2.9 billion.

 
Sixty-four percent of agricultural products were exported to APEC countries. The largest contributions came from exports to:

  • China, up $957 million (37 percent) to $3.5 billion. Dairy exports to China increased $777 million (51 percent) to $2.3 billion.
  • Australia, up $190 million (7.9 percent) to $2.6 billion. Important commodities include:
    • dairy, up $69 million (15 percent) to $539 million
    • fruit and vegetables, up $23 million (6.1 percent) to $394 million
    • wine, up $11 million (3.2 percent) to $338 million.
  •  The United States of America, up $248 million (11 percent) to $2.5 billion. Almost half of the agricultural products exported were meat and meat products, up $132 million (13 percent) to $1.2 billion. The largest contributions to the rise in meat and meat products exports came from:
    • frozen beef products, up $50 million (7.0 percent) to $771 million
    • sheep meat products, up $70 million (29 percent) to $311 million.
  •  Japan, up $116 million (7.8 percent) to $1.6 billion. Large contributors include dairy, meat and meat products, and fruit and vegetables.

The largest destination for agricultural products by value outside APEC was the United Kingdom. Exports to the United Kingdom were down $91 million (7.2 percent) to $1.2 billion. Approximately half the exports were sheep meat products, down $61 million (9.5 percent) to $581 million.

Exports of non-agricultural products

Exports of non-agricultural products increased $1.8 billion (10 percent) from the year ended June 2010, to $20.2 billion. The largest contributor was forestry and forestry products, up $655 million (17 percent), due to increases in exports of logs, wood, and wood articles.

Australia received the highest value of non-agricultural products ($7.7 billion) exported in the year ended June 2011. Exports to Australia are up $473 million (6.5 percent). The largest contributor was the petroleum, crude, and refined products commodity group, up $226 million (13 percent) to $2.0 billion.

Exports to China showed the largest increase in value, up $568 million (37 percent) to $2.1 billion. Significant contributors included:

  • forestry and forestry products, up $430 million (43 percent) to $1.4 billion
  • fish, shellfish, and products, up $115 million (89 percent) to $245 million.

In the year ended June 2011, 70 percent of all exports were primary products and 26 percent were manufactured goods. Of the primary products, 53 percent were processed. Of the manufactured goods, 63 percent were elaborately transformed. New Zealand exported 37 percent of all manufactured goods and 16 percent of all primary products to Australia. Ninety-one percent of all exports to China were primary products. More information about how the level of processing (LOP) is classified is available on the Statistics NZ website.

Imports rise by $5 billion

New Zealand’s merchandise imports in the year ended June 2011 were valued at $45.1 billion, up $5.0 billion (12 percent), from the year ended June 2010. The top 30 import commodities by value all increased China and the United States of America recorded increases, partly offset by a fall in imports from Australia.

Imports from APEC economies were valued at $33.2 billion and accounted for 74 percent of total imports in the year ended June 2011. Imports from the European Union were valued at $6.8 billion for the year ended June 2011 and contributed 15 percent of total imports.

Australia remained New Zealand’s largest source of merchandise imports in the year ended June 2011, accounting for $7.4 billion (16 percent) of total imports. This is a decrease of $385 million (4.9 percent) from the year ended June 2010. The highest-value import from Australia was aluminium oxide, up $75 million (30 percent), to $325 million. The largest decrease in imports was crude oil, down $187 million (84 percent) to $36 million.

China was New Zealand’s second-largest source of imports, up $1.0 billion (16 percent) to $7.1 billion. The highest-value import from China was computers, up $112 million (19 percent) to $711 million. Telephones and cellphones were the second-largest import commodity and had the largest increase by value, up $127 million (35 percent) to $489 million.
 
The United States of America was New Zealand’s third-largest source of imports, up $916 million (22 percent) to $5.1 billion. Aircraft and aircraft parts were the largest commodity groups by value and recorded the largest increases. Aircraft increased $499 million (156 percent) to $820 million. Aircraft parts increased $96 million (29 percent) to $431 million.

Mineral fuels and oils were New Zealand’s highest-value imports in the year ended June 2011, worth $7.3 billion and accounting for 16 percent of total imports. Other significant imports included machinery ($5.5 billion), vehicles ($4.3 billion), and electrical machinery ($3.9 billion). A description of the Harmonised System (HS) chapter heading ‘mineral fuels and oils’ is available on the Statistics NZ website.

In the year ended June 2011, 29 percent of all imports were primary products and 70 percent were manufactured goods. Of the primary products, 51 percent were processed. Of the manufactured goods, 88 percent were elaborately transformed. Fifty-seven percent of all manufactured goods imported were mechanical and electrical machinery and equipment. More information about how the level of processing (LOP) is classified is available on the Statistics NZ website.

Annual trade surplus nears $1 billion

The annual trade balance for the year ended June 2011 was a surplus of $999 million (2.2 percent of exports). This compares with a surplus of $593 million (1.5 percent of exports) for the year ended June 2010.

The trade surplus with Australia was $2.9 billion (28 percent of exports). This compares with a surplus of $1.9 billion (19 percent of exports) for the year ended June 2010.

There were trade deficits with New Zealand’s next-largest trading partners. The trade deficit with China was $1.5 billion (26 percent of exports) and the trade deficit with the United States of America was $1.1 billion (29 percent of exports).

Export of services down for second consecutive year

In the year ended June 2011, New Zealand’s service exports were worth $12.5 billion, down $233 million from the year ended June 2010. This is the second consecutive annual decrease in service exports. New Zealand imported services to the value of $13.4 billion in the year ended June 2011, up $1.0 billion from the year ended June 2010.

Overseas visitor numbers flat

Permanent, long-term, and short-term overseas visitor arrivals numbered 2.6 million in the year ended June 2011, an increase of 1,750 visitors from the year ended June 2010. The largest sources of visitors to New Zealand in the year ended June 2011 were Australia (44 percent of all visitors), the United Kingdom (9.1 percent), and the United States of America (7.4 percent).

Visitors from China increased the most, up 27,432 (25 percent) to 138,575. Visitor numbers from Malaysia, India, and Singapore also increased. Visitors from the United Kingdom decreased the most, down 30,231 (11 percent) to 234,427. The next-largest decrease was for visitors from Australia, down 9,087 (0.8 percent) to 1.1 million.

Re-export definition

Re-exports are goods brought into New Zealand and exported without a ‘substantial transformation’. ‘Substantial transformation’ is defined as products which have had 50 percent or more value added. Goods that have been substantially transformed are classified as domestic exports. Trans-shipment goods are not included. Goods that are re-exported will have been previously included in import statistics in some form.

Classifications

The commodity tables show the principal markets for New Zealand’s exports (and some imports) of several product groups, including agricultural, non-agricultural, dairy, meat, fruit and vegetables, forestry, and machinery. Economic groupings, and the geographic country groupings that make up the geographic regions used in the text, are defined in the appendices at the end of this publication. Other definitions, for example the services definitions, are those Statistics NZ uses and are based on standard International Monetary Fund criteria. A summary of these definitions also appears at the end of this publication.

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