The Territory is geographically located close to major Asian economies including China, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand and, as expected, these are the Territory’s major trading partners. The Territory also relies on goods imports from the United States of America and the European Union, which are also identified as key trading partners.
Please note that some of the main items of trade have been confidentialised by the ABS due to sensitivity of specific commodities and limited sources of goods and merchandise, which makes suppliers easily identifiable.
Map 1: The Territory’s Major Goods Trading Partners, 20181, 2
1 Current prices.
2 This map is produced from various sources. Department of Treasury and Finance cannot guarantee the accuracy, currency or completeness of the information. To be used as a guide only.
3 Excluding special administrative regions (Macau and Hong Kong) and Taiwan.
Source: Department of Treasury and Finance, ABS, International Trade in Goods and Services, Cat. No. 5368.0
In 2018, China received about $2.3 billion worth of exports from the Territory, representing a 21.3% increase from 2017, making it the Territory’s second largest export market. The main exports to China included confidential items and metalliferous ores and metal scrap. Goods imported from China totaled to $106 million, reflecting a decrease of 21.5% from 2017, mainly reflecting imports of confidential items.
In 2018, Japan overtook China as the Territory’s largest export market. During the year, the Territory exported $2.6 billion worth of goods to Japan, increasing by 44.2% compared to 2017. The majority of these exports were confidential in nature, however are likely to consist of exports of petroleum, gas and mineral products. Imports from Japan decreased by 22.2% in 2018, to a total value of $123 million. Goods imported mainly consisted of road vehicles (81.3%), rubber manufactures (6.0%) and non-metallic mineral manufactures (3.6 %).
The Territory exported $244.0 million worth of goods to Thailand in 2018, representing a decrease of 12.5% from 2017. In 2018, the Territory imported $65 million of goods from Thailand, representing a 9.7% decrease from the previous year. This was largely a result of a reduction in imports of general industrial machinery and equipment (down 16.7%) and road vehicles (down 9.9%).
The Territory is a net importer of goods from Malaysia, with imports decreasing by 47.1% to $193.0 million in 2018, largely reflecting imports of petroleum fuels. Exports to Malaysia increased substantially by 94.7% to $145.0 million, predominantly driven by a growth in confidential items (up 178.7%).
In 2018, goods imports from Singapore increased by 227.0% to $703 million, resulting from a growth in petroleum and petroleum-related products imported to the Territory. Exports to Singapore decreased by 56.7% to $13 million in 2018, mainly driven by a decrease of inorganic chemicals, likely consisting of helium and phosphate.
The Territory received $148.0 million in imports from the United States of America (USA), representing a decrease of 18.7% from 2017. Imports from the USA largely consist of power generating machinery and equipment (48.9%), transport equipment (19.6%) and general industrial machinery and equipment (8.1%), mainly related to the construction of major projects. In 2018, the Territory exported $80.0 million worth of goods to the USA, a decrease of 50.6 % from the previous year. The majority of exports were confidentialised goods, which likely consist of metalliferous ores, particularly uranium, as well as meat preparations (boxed beef) largely from the mothballed Livingstone abattoir in the Territory.
The Territory exported $386.0 million worth of goods to Indonesia in 2018, with 93.6% of exports consisting of live animals, predominantly live cattle (and buffalo). Growth in this industry has been a result of increased import permits for live cattle by Indonesian authorities. The Territory imports from Indonesia increased by 62.5% to $13.0 million in 2018.
In 2018, Territory exports to the Republic of Korea (Korea) increased by 82.4% to $445.0 million, predominately influenced by an increase in exports of confidential items (up 83.2%), which is likely to consist of exports of gas and mineral products. Imports from Korea decreased significantly by 49.5% to $56.0 million in 2018, mainly driven by a decrease in confidential items (down 86.3%) and general industrial machinery and equipment (down 82.8%).
In 2018, Territory exports to India decreased by 44.0% to about $108.0 million. Decline in exports largely consisted of confidential items, which likely includes metalliferous ores, particularly manganese, being an input into steel production. Territory goods imports from India remained unchanged at $7.0 million in 2018, mainly consisting of manufactures of metals (48.6%), which are generally cast articles of iron and steel for production purposes.
In 2018, Vietnam received about $168.0 million worth of exports from the Territory, increasing by 76.8% from 2017. The majority of exports consisted of live animals, predominantly live cattle and buffalo exports. Territory goods imports from Vietnam increased by 420% to about $26.0 million, which mainly consisted of transport equipment (81.1%) and paper, paperboard and articles of paper pulp (3.3%).
The European Union consists of 28 member states, including Austria, Belgium (including Belgium Luxembourg), Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France (including the French Antilles), Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands (including the Netherlands Antilles), Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and United Kingdom.
In 2018, the Territory exported $145.0 million to the European Union, representing an increase from $125 million in 2017. Exports largely consisted of a range of metalliferous ores and metal scraps to various countries. Imports from the European Union accounted for 9.1% of Territory total good imports in 2018. The Territory imported $176.0 million from the European Union, a decrease of 41.7% from the previous year ($302.0 million). Import from the European Union mainly consisted of general industrial machinery and equipment (17.5 %), confidential items (16.5 %) as well as transport equipment (12.5%).