Latest release
International Trade in Services; Concepts, Sources and Methods

This publication outlines the major concepts, definitions, data sources and methods used to prepare the international trade in services estimates.

Reference period
December 2021
Released
9/12/2021
Next release Unknown
First release

Change to timing of release of International Trade, Supplementary Information, financial year (2020-21) and calendar year (2021)

COVID-19 has impacted the availability and quality of source data used to compile international trade in services estimates. As a result the 2020-21 and 2021 International Trade, Supplementary Information publications (former cat. nos. 5368.0.55.003 and 5368.0.55.004) have been delayed. Both publications are expected to be released commencing from June 2022. 

Introduction

Over the last half-century, Australia has evolved from a freight-centric transport services provider, to a sophisticated trader across the services sector. Tourism, education, business and personal services now join transportation services as important parts of Australia’s trading relationship with the rest of the world.

This paper contains information regarding the concepts that underpin the ABS international trade in services statistics. It also provides information on how international trade in services estimates are produced, the data sources used in compilation and their quality characteristics.

Information in this document will help you:

  • understand what is included in international trade in service statistics.
  • understand the data sources which contribute to different service categories.
  • recognise the uses of international trade in services statistics.
  • understand the quality of ABS international trade in services statistics.

Important Points

  • International trade in services statistics measure the value of services transactions between Australian and overseas entities.
  • International trade in services estimates are an important component of Australia’s Balance of Payments and contribute towards the measure of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
  • International trade in services statistics are compiled from survey, administrative and modelled data.
  • Monthly estimates of international trade in services are mostly nowcast and should be used with caution.
  • Estimates are revised when input data becomes available (to replace or update nowcasts).