Dairy exports down but prices still high

Last updated 11:15 24/07/2013

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Dairy and meat exports slumped in the June quarter, with volumes down heavily and overall values also falling, hit by the summer drought.

Statistics New Zealand figures just out show quantities of milk powder, butter and cheese fell 18 per cent in the June quarter, though total values were down only 6.8 per cent, reflecting higher prices for the limited supplies.

Meat volumes were down 12 per cent, though meat values were down 9.2 per cent.

Overall, seasonally adjusted values of all exports dropped 4.7 per cent to $11 billion in the June quarter. Exports rose 0.4 per cent in the March quarter.

Imports in the quarter rose 1 per cent to $11.6b.

That left a seasonally adjusted trade shortfall of $669 million, equal to 6.1 per cent of exports.

For the month of June alone, export values fell almost 4 per cent or by $161m compared with June last year. But June imports dropped sharply by more than 7 per cent or $286m.

Falling imports led the country to move into a monthly trade surplus of $414m.

The trade balance for the year was a deficit of $777m.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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