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Coal and iron ore key to export rise

Coal and iron ore key to export rise article image
Australia increased its exports by 22.6 percent to almost $284 billion last year despite the economic downturn, according to a new Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) report, Australia’s Trade by State and Territory 2008-09. Coal and iron ore were the commodities instrumental to export growth. Western Australia had the rising price of iron ore and gold behind it to clinch its position as the nation's leading export state, and Queensland prospered via sales of coal and beef. The Smart State has now overtaken New South Wales as Australia's second-biggest exporter. NSW had coal to thank for almost $13 billion in revenue, but also recorded the nation's highest growth in service exports, an increase of 6.7 percent to garner $21.6 billion. Natural gas was the rising earner for the Northern Territory, while education-related travel helped the Australian Capital Territory. "Strong commodity prices, demand from China, and Australia's diversified trade base were factors in the resilient performance of the nation's exporters in the face of the global economic crisis," said Minister for Trade Simon Crean, adding that the new ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement would help exporters "gain new markets and diversify their exports in the fastest growing region of the world". To download the report, see the DFAT website.

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