Media release from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

D05 - 5 April 2006

Exports of Resources and Manufactures Driven by Strong World Demand

The value of Australia's exports of goods and services rose for the tenth consecutive quarter reaching $46.7 billion in the December quarter, a four per cent rise in seasonally adjusted terms. For the calendar year 2005, exports were 15 per cent higher at $176.7 billion.

Exports growth in the December quarter continued to be supported by increased export volumes and prices in the resources and manufacturing sectors, with exporters benefiting from strong world demand, especially from the East Asian region, for mineral resources and metals. Exports of Minerals and fuels rose nine per cent to $16.5 billion in the December quarter, while exports of Manufactures rose four per cent to $9.7 billion. Exports of rural goods were unchanged at $6.2 billion in the December quarter, while services exports fell 3 per cent.

The export results are contained in the December quarter 2005 issue of Trade Topics: A Quarterly Review of Australia's International Trade, released today by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Trade Topics, brings together a range of statistical information produced by Australian government agencies and international organisations, together with analysis of the latest trade developments, designed to keep Australians informed of market conditions and trends.

The December quarter 2005 issue of Trade Topics features a number of trade-related articles. They include articles on: the strong trade performance in 2005 which culminated in exports reaching record highs; recent developments in Australia's gold trade; the WTO Hong Kong Ministerial meeting and prospects for the Doha Round's progress over the next year; and the opening up of China's services sector associated with its accession to the WTO.

Trade Topics includes quarterly and annual data on Australia's trade in goods and services by commodity, market, level of processing, and State and Territory as well as selected macroeconomic, commodity price and investment information.

The publication is one of a series of trade publications published each year by DFAT. Copies can be purchased through the Market Information and Analysis Section (ph 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/statistics.html.

Media enquiries: Traci Williams, DFAT Media Liaison, 02 6261 1555