The Australian Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday released data around the international trade in services by country for 2013.
It’s a release that isn’t followed overly much but in this instance it was a vitally important release because the $6.881 billion in services exports that Australia made to China tipped total Australian exports over $100 billion for the first time in history.
Federal Minister for Trade, Andrew Robb commented on the economic milestone, highlighting the strong rise in exports of around $22 billion from 2012 to 2013 and the fact that “China now accounts for almost a third of Australia’s total goods and services exports”.
It’s a big jump which Business Insider has confirmed by rebuilding a spreadsheet of the two data series on which DFAT and the Minster’s claims were based.
Driving the big pick up in exports to China has been Western Australia’s mining investment turning into production. This saw exports from the west jump from $51 billion in 2012 to $66 billion last year.
Along with export data, Robb said two way trade with China now makes up around 25% of total Australian trade or approximately $151 billion.
This data shows why Australia continues to benefit from the soft landing that the Chinese authorities are so-far achieving. It should also be a counterpoint to weak consumer sentiment at present and likely in the months ahead.
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