Media release from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

1 February 2007

Exports of Primary and Manufactured Products Continue to Grow Strongly

Australian produced merchandise exports rose 20 per cent in 2005-06. According to analysis released today by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), exports of Primary products rose 23 per cent, while Manufactures rose 15 per cent.

The new DFAT publication, Exports of Primary and Manufactured Products, Australia  2005-06, provides a comprehensive analysis of Australian-produced merchandise trade by level of processing.

Primary Products account for 66 per cent of Australian produced merchandise exports in 2005-06. Exports of primary products rose 23 per cent to $95.5 billion, reflecting strong rises in fuels and minerals exports (both unprocessed and processed).

Unprocessed fuels exports grew 33 per cent in 2005-06 to $30.3 billion, driven by higher commodity prices for coal and crude petroleum exports.  Unprocessed minerals rose 50 per cent to $23.1 billion in 2005-06, largely due to higher exports of metalliferous ores such as iron, copper, zinc and lead ores.

Processed primary products were also higher in 2005-06. Processed fuel exports rose 33 per cent to $8.6 billion, driven by increased exports of natural gas.  A 20 per cent rise in processed minerals exports to $5.4 billion was mostly due to higher alumina exports.

Exports of manufactured products rose 15 per cent to $34.1 billion in 2005-06.  Manufactures made up 24 per cent of all Australian-produced merchandise exports in 2005-06.  Within the manufactures category, exports of simply transformed manufactures (STM), which consist of mainly basic metal manufactures, rose by 23 per cent to $12.6 billion.  Exports of elaborately transformed manufactures (ETM), which include sophisticated products such as electronic components, office and telecommunication equipment, motor vehicles and a variety of other machinery and equipment, rose by 11 per cent to $21.5 billion.

Exports of Primary and Manufactured Products, Australia 2005-06 is part of a series published each year by DFAT, providing comprehensive information on Australia’s international trade in goods and services.  DFAT also offers a customised consultancy service, producing reports tailored to specific requirements.  For further information contact (02) 6261 3114, fax (02) 6261 3321 or email statssection@dfat.gov.au.  The analysis and summary tables from publications, and an order form, are available at: www.dfat.gov.au/publications/stats-pubs/exports_primary_manufacture.html.

Media Inquiries:  DFAT Media Liaison on 02 6261 1555