Exports fall for March continues five month decline

Some hard facts for the Key cheer squad to ponder-

Statistics NZ reports that for the past five months, exports to China and Australia have both fallen, compared with the same month in the previous year. Falls in exports to China were larger than the falls to Australia.

The value of goods exports to Australia ($8.7 billion) surpassed those to China for the year ended March 2015.

“This is the first time Australia has been our top export destination since the year ended November 2013,” international statistics manager Jason Attewell said.

Total goods exports fell $103 million (2.0 percent), down to $4.9 billion in March 2015 compared with March 2014. Exports to China fell $324 million (29 percent), due to whole milk powder. Exports to Australia fell $26 million.

Goods imports rose $169 million (4.1 percent), to reach $4.3 billion in March 2015. Consumption goods (including clothing) led the rise (up 19 percent).

For the year ended March 2015, there was an annual trade deficit of $2.4 billion (4.9 percent of exports). This was the largest annual trade deficit since the year ended July 2009.