? Australian exporters by the numbers, 2014-15(1) - CCPIT in Australia

Australian exporters by the numbers, 2014-15(1)

Published on 2016-06-29

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has released the latest edition of its Characteristics of Australian Exporters, which provides exporter counts for 2014-15, including an improved estimate of the total number of exporters, along with a breakdown of exporter numbers by export market and industry. Strikingly, the new data show that Australia added more than four thousand new exporters in 2014-15, pushing the total well over 51,000.

One important change in this year’s release is that the ABS has altered the methodology it uses to estimate the number of goods exporters1. The good news is that this change means that the same statistical unit is now used to collect data on exporters of goods and of services, which increases the accuracy of the estimate of total exporters2. The not so good news is that this change introduces a break into the time series for the number of goods exporters (after changes in 2013 it was already the case that estimates of counts of services exporters for 2013-14 and 2014-15 were not directly comparable with earlier estimates). Still, according to the ABS, the trend of goods exporter numbers, as opposed to the level, should not be significantly altered by the new count.

The headline number from the current release is that in 2014-15 there were 51,228 exporters of goods and/or services. That represented an increase of 4,160 (or nine per cent) from 2013-14. Within that total, the number of goods exporters increased by 3,947 (nine per cent) to 48,681 while the number of services exporters increased by 260 (eight per cent) to 3,5573.

By sector, the number of goods exporters is dominated by wholesale trade (12,912 exporters or about 27 per cent of all goods exporters), manufacturing (9,306 exporters, 19 per cent), and retail trade (4,261 exporters, nine per cent).

The most important services sectors include telecommunications, computer and information services and other business services4.


(Australian Government Australian Trade and Investment Commission)