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Susan Kilsby, agriculture economist at ANZ, points out that the New Zealand’s trade balance for February was stronger than expected with exports above expectations and imports aligned with expectations.

Key Quotes

“The unadjusted monthly trade balance hit a small surplus in February of $12m in January. Exports at $4.8bn were above expectations, with lamb exports at record levels. Imports were aligned with expectations at $4.8bn.”

“On a seasonally adjusted basis, exports increased 7.7% m/m.”

“Seasonally adjusted imports rose 0.7% m/m.”

“On a regional basis, exports to China continued to trend up. Exports to China in February were 32.5% higher than the previous February. Year to date exports are now up 16.1%. Exports to South Korea are also in double digits for the year to date, up 10.1%.”

“Further surpluses are expected as the year progresses reflecting ongoing strength in export volumes of meat and dairy products. The recent lift in dairy prices is yet to flow through to export values but this should start to occur in the coming months.”