IMPACT OF NATURAL DISASTERS
JAPANESE EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI
The Japanese earthquake and tsunami occurred on 11 March 2011. On a month to month basis, original and seasonally adjusted series can be impacted by a number of factors including commodity prices, exchange rates, supply constraints, consumer confidence and unusual influences. It is not usually possible to quantify the impact of a specific event, like the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, on the export and import series. The impact of these events will be closely monitored by the ABS.
Between April and May 2011 merchandise imports from Japan rose $314m (40%) after falling 48% between March and April 2011. The major components contributing to the rise in May 2011 were:
- non-industrial transport equipment, up $190m (159%) after falling $494m (81%) between March and April 2011
- fuels and lubricants, up $150m from a value of $2m in April, after falling $81m (97%) between March and April 2011.
Between April and May 2011 merchandise exports to Japan fell $150m (4%) due primarily to a fall of $217m (19%) in the metal ores and minerals component.