Another Trade Surplus in November as Coal Sales Stabilise: CCIQ

Thursday 9 January, 2020 | By: Dr Marcus Smith

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) notes the value of coal shipments leaving Australia improved by $200 million to $4.7 billion over the month as iron ore and natural gas exports remain elevated over the November period.

CCIQ Chief Economist, Dr Marcus Smith said activity in Queensland’s resources sector remains solid in terms of activity despite a metallurgical coal price that has fallen by as much as 30% year to date.

“Queensland coal and natural gas exports have provided the State government with an unforeseen budget boost, which has allowed the government to talk up the State’s finances as opposed to the precarious nature of commodities pricing globally.

“The state’s performance in specialised exports continues to highlight an impressive track record of more small businesses entering the export market.

“Australian beef exports hit an all-time high of $1.048 billion for the month ($10.57 billion for the past 12 months), and with national merchandise trade up $49.437 billion over the previous twelve months, three commodities constitute almost 54% of the nation’s annual merchandise exports of $389.084 billion including iron ore $94.2 billion, (24.2%), coal $65.5 billion (16.8%) and natural gas $49.4 billion (12.7%).

“Western Australia merchandise exports hit a record $14.74 billion over the month, meaning that together with Queensland the two resource states produced over 66% of total national merchandise exports," Dr Smith said.

In an analysis of the ABS data, total merchandise exports from Queensland rose by $463 million to $6.71 billion in November whilst imports fell sharply by $489 million to $3.99 billion over the same period.

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