Exports reached 4,309 NZD million in January of 2018, climbing only 9.5 percent year-on-year after a downwardly revised 24.3 percent increase in December. Milk powder, butter & cheese exports lost steam in January, jumping 8.0 percent after a 30.3 percent advance in the previous month. Meat & edible offal also increased at a slower rate of 16.9 percent, compared to 46.6 percent in December. In addition, fruit exports declined 12.2 percent. By destination, exports to Korea grew a strong 38.2 percent, while those to Japan expanded by 29.8 percent and to the EU by 22.2 percent. In contrast, exports to China fell 2.1 percent and to the US 1.5 percent.
Meantime, imports increased by a faster rate of 17.1 percent year-on-year to 4,875 NZD million in January of 2018, compared to a downwardly revised 10.8 percent climb in the previous month. Purchases of aircraft & parts rebounded sharply (+49.3 percent) after a 32.5 percent plunge in December. In addition, vehicles, part & accessories also rebounded (6.8 percent) after a modest decline of 3.9 percent. By country of origin, imports from the EU rose 27.3 percent percent after climbing 18.6 percent in the previous month. Imports from Korea soared 138.5 percent, while those from Malaysia surged 149.3 percent. Imports from China (+13.4 percent), Australia (+13.4 percent), and the US (+11.3 percent) continued to expand. In contrast, those from Japan declined 8.2 percent in January.