The resources sector still accounts for the majority of Australia’s exports, according to recent data from the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade
The figures show that during 2016, resources made up 64.1% of Australia’s exports by dollar value.
Not surprisingly, iron ore topped the list. That was followed by coal and it’s quite a steep drop to our third biggest export – education-related travel (in other words, international students studying in Australia).
Here’s the latest table:
It clearly shows how dominant a role the resources industry still plays in the Australian economy, and more specifically our terms of trade.
This pie chart breaks down the above table by sector, and shows that exports from the combined resources sector are almost eight times higher than the next biggest industry:
Given the large swings in iron ore prices this year, the above data reinforces how changes in iron ore prices can affect Australia’s balance of international trade.
This Thursday the Australian Bureau of Statistics will release Australia’s international trade balance data for June. The market is forecasting a fall of around $0.6 billion from the May surplus of $2.5 billion due to lower export revenue.
This chart shows the dramatic moves in the iron ore price this year: