Driven by higher export prices and volumes, Australia's export earnings from mineral resources rose to $26.5 billion in the September quarter 2006, an increase of $829 million, or 3 per cent from earnings in the previous quarter. The result is contained in the September quarter Australian Mineral Statistics report, released today by Phillip Glyde, Executive Director of ABARE. 'This stronger performance mainly reflects higher export prices and increases in export volumes for over half of the mineral and energy commodities,' Mr Glyde stated. 'Commodities that recorded the largest increases in export earnings in the September quarter 2006 were: crude oil (up $951 million); nickel (up $664 million); iron ore and pellets (up $404 million); and petroleum refinery products (up $126 million),' Mr Glyde said. The index of export prices of Australian mineral resources (export unit returns) rose by 4 per cent in the September quarter 2006, compared with the previous quarter. When compared with the September quarter 2005, the index was around 20 per cent higher. 'This reflects higher world prices for most commodities compared with a year ago,' Mr Glyde said. Mr Glyde also noted that export earnings for some major export commodities decreased during the September quarter 2006, including steaming coal, copper, coking coal, lead and zinc, although earnings still remain significantly higher than twelve months ago, apart from coal. ABARE's most recent short term (to 2006-07) forecasts of production, exports and prices for the full range of Australia's key mineral resource commodities, will be published in the December issue of ABARE's quarterly journal, Australian Commodities, to be released electronically at 10am on 18 December 2006.
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