A comment in the PREFU about our relative trade with China and the US got me curious, so I downloaded the export data from Stats NZ. This is purely how much we export to each country. The years are June years.
- In 1990 we exported 12 times as much to the US than China – $1.9b v $0.16b
- In 2000 we exported 5 times as much to the US than China – $3.7b v $0.77b
- In 2008 we exported twice as much to the US than China – $$4.0b v $2.1b
- In 2011 we exported 7/10ths as much to the US than – $3.9b v $5.6b
- From 2000 to 2011 the level of exports to the US has increased only 5% (and these are nominal dollars)
- From 2000 to 2011 the level of exports to China have increased 635%
- Since the FTA was signed in 2008, exports to China have increased a massive 170% in just three years
- In actual dollar terms, that is $3.6b more exports to China in 2011 than 2008
- Comparing three year periods, 2009-11 saw $13.1b of exports compared to $5.7b the previous three years
I suggest people ask candidates of parties that opposed the NZ-China Free Trade Agreement, why? The Foreign Minister in the last Government campaigned against it. The Greens voted against it.
I regard the China/FTA as the best achievement of the 5th Labour Government, and a probably the best legacy from both Clark and Goff who should be very proud of making it happen. If we had not had that extra $13b of exports in the last three years, we’d be a lot worse off.