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Deficit up

AUSTRALIA’S goods and services trade balance went further into deficit in February, increasing to $1.9 billion in seasonally adjusted terms – an increase of $567 million on January 2003 figures.

Total exports fell by $814 or 6 per cent during the month following a $691 million increase in January as the impact of the drought and softer world markets took their toll.  Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that imports fell $247 million, or 2 per cent, during the month. Imports of capital goods rose $600 million or 29 per cent during the month.

Over the year ending February 2003, exports to China, Indonesia, Singapore and the European Union rose 13 per cent, 12 per cent, 13 per cent and 31 per cent respectively.

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