Media Release

15 June 2007

Exports of Primary Products and Manufactures Posted Double-Digit Growth in 2006

Australian-produced merchandise exports increased 18 per cent in 2006 according to analysis released today by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

The new DFAT publication, Exports of Primary and Manufactured Products, Australia 2006, provides a comprehensive analysis of Australian-produced merchandise trade by level of processing.

Primary Products accounted for 65 per cent of Australian-produced merchandise exports in 2006. Exports of primary products rose 16 per cent to $101 billion, reflecting strong rises in fuels and minerals exports (both unprocessed and processed).

Unprocessed minerals exports grew 37 per cent in 2006 to $26.8 billion, driven by higher world commodity prices. Unprocessed fuels rose 7 per cent to $29.9 billion, also due to higher world prices. Processed primary products were also higher in 2006. Processed fuel exports increased 26 per cent to $9.4 billion, driven by increased exports of natural gas. A 31 per cent rise in processed minerals exports to $6.2 billion was mostly due to higher world prices for alumina.

Manufactures made up 24 per cent ($36.7 billion) of Australian-produced merchandise exports in 2006. Within the manufactures category, exports of simply transformed manufactures (STM), which consist of mainly basic metal manufactures, increased 33 per cent to $14.4 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 8 per cent to $22.3 billion.

Other goods (including gold) increased 35 per cent to $17.6 billion.

Exports of Primary and Manufactured Products, Australia 2006 is part of a series published each year by DFAT, providing comprehensive information on Australia’s international trade in goods and services. The analysis and summary tables, and an order form for this publication are available at: www.dfat.gov.au/trade.

From 1 July 2007, the Department’s statistical publications will be made available to the public free-of-charge on the DFAT website. Should clients wish to obtain printed copies of these publications, they will be directed from the DFAT website to an external website, where they can place an order for a hard copy. For further information, contact (02) 6261 3114, fax (02) 6261 3321 or email statssection@dfat.gov.au.

Media Inquiries:  DFAT Media Liaison on 02 6261 1555