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5363.0 - Balance of Payments and International Investment Position, Australia, 1997-98  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 21/05/1999   
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  • About this Release
  • USA regains top spot in Australia's service exports market (Media Release)


May 21, 1999
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)

USA regains top spot in Australia's service exports market

The main market for Australia's services exports in 1997-98 was the United States of America, taking $3.9 billion or 15% of total service exports, according to the publication Balance of Payments and International Investment Position, Australia released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Services exports to the USA were up $835 million on the previous year, with increases across all major commodities. The USA regains the top market ranking it last held in 1987-88, taking over from Japan which had been the largest destination for Australia's trade in services for the past nine years.

Japan comes in at number two, taking $3.1 billion (12% of total service exports) and the United Kingdom is the third largest market, at $2.3 billion (9% of total service exports).

Other highlights from the publication include:
  • Australia's current account deficit for 1997-98 increased $5.6 billion (32%) to $23.3 billion;
  • The current account deficit, as a percentage of Australia's Gross Domestic Product was 4.1%, up from 3.3% in 1996-97;
  • Australia's largest current account surpluses were recorded with Japan ($4.5 billion), Republic of Korea ($3.0 billion), and Hong Kong ($2.9 billion);
  • Australia's largest deficits were recorded with United States of America ($17.2 billion), United Kingdom ($8.5 billion) and Germany ($4.3 billion);
  • The balance on financial account for 1997-98 recorded a net inflow (surplus) of $22.8 billion, up $7.1 billion on 1996-97;
  • As at 30 June 1998, Australia had a net foreign liability of $322 billion, of which, net foreign debt was $226 billion and net foreign equity $96 billion; and,
  • Australian investment abroad reached $249 billion and foreign investment in Australia was $571 billion.

Further details on Australia's trade in services to overseas countries and international accounts data for 1992-93 through to 1997-98 are available in Balance of Payments and International Investment Position, Australia 1997-98 (cat. no. 5363.0) available at ABS bookshops.

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