Wednesday 27 June 2007, 5:51PM By
Statistics New Zealand
Both imports and exports fell in May 2007 compared with May 2006, Statistics New Zealand said today. Themain cause of the falls was a decrease in large and irregular items traded. In May 2006, a $235 millionaircraft and a record amount of petroleum and products were imported, while three large items with acombined value of $245 million were exported. While both imports and exports for May 2007 were down onthe previous May, exports had the third-highest value on record for any month.The decrease in imports was dominated by the two commodity groups mentioned above Ã¢â‚¬â€œ petroleum andproducts, and aircraft and parts Ã¢â‚¬â€œ down a combined $444 million from May 2006. A $29 million increase invehicles, parts and accessories was the largest commodity increase.The $287 million fall in exports in May 2007 was led by aircraft and parts, down $177 million on May 2006.Exports of meat and edible offal, and milk powder, butter and cheese also decreased.Figures for May 2007 indicate that the trade balance was a marginal surplus of $9 million (0.3 percent ofexports). However, trade figures remain provisional for three months and updates could change thisbalance.It is usual for the month of May to show a surplus, and the average trade balance for a May month over thelast decade has been $234 million.