1304.5 - Stats Talk WA, Jun 2009  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 31/07/2009   
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Bulls & Bombs
IMPORTant And EXPORTable Facts

Have you ever wanted to know how many plastic statuettes are imported into Australia from Togo?

Maybe you have a burning desire to find out how many kilograms of toilet paper was brought into Western Australia in 2007 from the United Arab Emirates? Or perhaps the dollar value of Kangaroo Paws sent out from WA in 2008?

Using Australian Customs Data, the ABS can produce import and export tables through their client services area.

Export and import details like dollar value, how much, which country it originated from/is heading for and which state it went to/came from, can be readily found.

Stimulating Imports and Exports
For example; in 2008, quantities of bovine semen were imported to New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, but not to WA – no bull. However, WA did export 69 kg of bovine semen. Maybe it’s this and not daylight saving that was the real cause of those unhappy cows.

Some interesting things that have been imported into WA from overseas include; 991 kg of un-worked diamonds (2008), $212,320 of Vodka (2008), $1,997,459 of mineral and aerated waters (2008) and one Ferris Wheel (2009).

Conversation Starters
Here are some more interesting figures that will make you the toast of your next dinner party. In 2006, $1,294 worth of live reptiles were imported into Australia. Don’t we have enough of our own?

Australia received $4,650 of wood statues and other ornaments of wood from Iceland in 2008. In 2006 WA imported 170kg of un-worked human hair from Hong Kong.

Something that people may not know is that there are records kept regarding the import of ‘Bombs, grenades, torpedoes, mines, missiles and similar munitions or war and parts thereof’.

At the risk of starting an international incident you could mention that the ABS has details on the import of these items from countries like Sweden, UK, USA, Austria, Canada and Finland in 2008.

One would hope that these items are heading straight to the Australian military. $5,885 of these particular items were even imported from Belgium. Watch out for those chocolates, they could have a real kick in them.

Let the sun shine
Now that the daylight saving referendum has been decided, disgruntled YES voters may look to imports and exports to help them get over the shock (although on the bright side they probably will have another referendum to look forward to).

Things we may need to import:
• Daylight
• Curtains - replacing those that faded over the last 3 years
• Bovine Semen - to produce more happy cows
• Coffee - for people who have to start earlier because of the 3 hour time difference with the east

Things we may need to export:
• Leisure equipment - no extra hour of daylight to play in
• Clock Parts - no more winding back and forth twice a year
• Sunscreen
• Swine flu

Oh, and one Ferris Wheel!

Nellie Gaynor
Article by: Nellie Gaynor
Information Services Consultant

* The dollar figures in this article are FOB (free on board) which includes production and other costs incurred up until the goods are placed on board the carrier for export.