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International Merchandise Trade Statistics – 2016

This is an informative publication, sponsored by The Fiji Sun, Fiji Bureau of Statistics and HFC Bank. All views expressed or implied are purely of the Financial Markets Analyst at
03 Jun 2017 11:00
International Merchandise  Trade Statistics – 2016
HFC

This is an informative publication, sponsored by The Fiji Sun, Fiji Bureau of Statistics and HFC Bank. All views expressed or implied are purely of the Financial Markets Analyst at the HFC Bank, Shoran Devi.

Fiji is renowned for its tourism services and yields a lot of growth from this industry. Tourism has exploded since the 1980s and is the leading economic activity in the islands. With this, it is vital for our country to keep track of the performance of our tourism industry and monitor any movements on a monthly and annual basis.

Provisional data put the value of goods imported in 2016 at $4,839.2 million while the value of total exports was $1,936.6 million (refer graph).

Compared to 2015, imports increased by $82.4 million (1.7%) while total exports decreased by $122.6 million (6.0%). The 2016 international merchandise trade deficit amounted to $2,902.6 million compared to $2,697.6 million a year earlier (2015)

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Compared to 2015, some of the import categories recording notable increases were:

  • Machinery, mechanical & electrical appliances & parts thereof were up by $100.7 million (12.8%) to $889.3 million due to increased imports of other dish washing machines of the household type.
  • Vehicles, aircraft & associated transport equipment, up $81.1 million (16.2 %) to $580.8 million due to increased imports of used or reconditioned passenger motor cars;
  • Base metals & articles thereof, up $45.8 million (15.9%) to $333.7 million due to increased imports of barbed wire of iron or steel;
  • Plastic, rubber & articles thereof, up $32.6 million (14.0%) to $266.0 million due to increased imports of new pneumatic tyres;
  • Wood, cork & articles thereof & plaiting materials, up $31.1 million (134.4%) to $54.2 million due to increased imports of other articles of wood.

 

Compared to 2015, the import categories recording notable decreases were:

  • Mineral products, down $272.0 million (26.2%) to $765.8 million due to decreased imports of gas oil (diesel);
  • Live animals: animal products, down $24.8 million (7.2%) to $321.1 million due to decreased imports of fresh fish;
  • Animal or vegetable oils & fats, down $6.3 million (9.9%) to $57.0 million due to decreased imports of imitation lard, liquid margarine and shortenings, vegetable oils and fats; and
  • Textiles and textile articles, down $5.8 million (2.4%) to $233.9 million due to decreased imports of garments.

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For the year 2016, Fiji’s major sources of imports (refer graph) were:

  • New Zealand, up $124.4 million (17.3%) to $843.0 million due to increased imports of potatoes;
  • Australia, up $73.9 million (9.6%) to $840.2 million due to increased imports of lamb;
  • Singapore, down $109.1 million (12.8%) to $743.8 million due to decreased imports of gas oil (diesel);
  • China – People’s Republic, up $46.1 million (6.6%) to $741.9 million due to increased imports of canned fish; and
  • Japan, up $122.0 million (58.1%) to $332.1 million due to increased imports of vehicles.

 

Performance of Fiji’s principal import commodities for the year 2016 shows growth in the imports of:

  • Vehicles, aircraft & associated transport equipment by 39.4 percent;
  • Base metals & articles thereof by 15.9 percent;
  • Plastic, rubber & articles thereof by 14.0 percent;
  • Machinery, mechanical & electrical appliances & parts thereof by 12.8 percent;
  • Chemicals and allied products by 7.5 percent;
  • Wood pulp, paper & paperboard & articles thereof by 6.9 percent;
  • Prepared foodstuffs, beverages, spirits & tobacco by 4.9 percent; and
  • Vegetable products by 1.2 percent.

 

Decreases were recorded in the imports of:

  • Mineral products by 26.2 percent;
  • Live animals: animal products by 7.2 percent; and
  • Textiles and textile articles by 2.4 percent.

Compared to 2015, the domestic export categories recording notable increases were:

  • Pearls, precious, semi-precious stones & metals, up $24.5 million (23.4%) to $129.3 million due to increased domestic exports of gold;
  • Live animals: animal products, up $20.5 million (22.0%) to $113.6 million due to increased domestic exports of fresh fish; and
  • Machinery, mechanical & electrical appliances & parts thereof, up $11.0 million (69.5%) to $26.9 million due to increased domestic exports of lead acid of a kind used for starting piston engines.

 

Compared to 2015, the domestic export categories recording notable decreases were:

  • Prepared foodstuffs, beverages, spirits & tobacco, down $52.7 million (10.5%) to $446.7 million due to decreased domestic exports of sugar;
  • Wood, cork & articles thereof & plaiting materials, down $29.2 million (31.4%) to $63.9 million due to decreased domestic exports of woodchips; and
  • Textiles & textile articles, down $7.9 million (6.8%) to $109.0 million due to decreased domestic exports of garments.

 

For the year 2016, Fiji’s major domestic export destinations (refer graph) were:

  • United States of America, down $31.8 million (9.9%) to $288.1 million due to decreased exports of molasses;
  • Australia, up $9.4 million (3.8%) to $259.3 million due to increased exports of gold;
  • United Kingdom, down $32.6 million (31.6%) to $70.6 million due to decreased exports of sugar;
  • New Zealand, up $3.1 million (4.9%) to $65.5 million due to increased exports of dalo; and
  • Vanuatu, up $7.6 million (15.5%) to $56.7 million due to increased exports of pasta.

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Performance of Fiji’s principal domestic export commodities for the year 2016 shows a growth in the exports of:

  • Coconut oil by 65.1 percent;
  • Kava by 60.8 percent;
  • Gold by 30.1 percent;
  • Footwear and headgear by 16.6 percent;
  • Mineral water by 7.3 percent;
  • Uncooked pasta by 2.0 percent;
  • Fruits and vegetables by 1.0 percent; and
  • Textiles, yarn & made up articles by 0.6 percent.

 

Decreases were recorded in the exports of:

  • Molasses by 69.9 percent;
  • Folding cartons, boxes and cases by 41.9 percent;
  • Coral & similar materials by 41.2 percent;
  • Ginger by 32.2 percent;
  • Timber, cork & wood by 31.4 percent;
  • Sweet biscuits by 26.0 percent;
  • Sugar by 20.4 percent;
  • Corned meat of bovine animals by 14.0 percent;
  • Garments by 7.2 percent;
  • Flour by 5.1 percent; and
  • Fish by 2.5 percent.

 

Also called “net exports”, the trade balance is a component of GDP. In financial terms, trade balance influence the total size and the composition of the current-account balance and, more broadly, it influences the balance of payments (which comprehends not only the trade balance but also income payments, loans and aid from abroad, and so on).



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