Exports from New Zealand advanced 8.3 percent year-on-year to NZD 4.82 billion in February 2019, after rising 1.3 percent in January. Exports were mostly boosted by higher sales of milk powder, butter & cheese category, which jumped 24.3 percent to NZD 1346 million. Also, sales of logs and wood climbed 19.8 percent to NZD 472 million. On the other hand, exports of mechanical machinery and equipment decreased 6.3 percent to NZD 126 million and sales of crude oil dropped 70.8 percent to NZD 20 million. By destination, exports went up to China (32.5 percent), the EU (7.4 percent) and Australia (2.1 percent), but fell to South Korea (-18.0 percent), the US (-3.4 percent), and Japan (-2.5 percent).
Imports rose 12.9 percent year-on-year to NZD 4.80 billion in February, after increasing 6.9 percent in the prior month. Imports were mainly driven by higher purchases of vehicles, partes & accessories (+26.6 percent to NZD 634 million); petroleum & products (+14.1 percent to NZD 514 million); and aircraft & parts (+521.1 percent to NZD 145 million). In contrast, imports dropped for fertilizers (-56.1 percent to NZD 21 million) and food residues, wastes and fodder (-29.5 percent to NZD 84 million). By country of origin, purchases increased from China (9.3 percent), Japan (100.6 percent); the EU (30.0 percent), the US (19.3 percent), and Australia (2.2 percent). Meanwhile, imports declined from Singapore (-31.4 percent), the United Arab Emirates (-17.7 percent), and Thailand (-11.9 percent).