International Trade Price Indexes, Australia

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Contains indexes measuring changes in prices of imports of merchandise landed in Australia and exports of merchandise shipped from Australia

Reference period
September 2022

Key statistics

  • Export price index fell 3.6% this quarter and rose 25.9% through the year.
  • Import price index rose 3.0% this quarter and 19.3% through the year.

What's new this quarter

This issue includes:

  • Information about the Import Price index and Export Price Index reweight for September quarter 2022. An update of changes is provided in this release under Changes in this issue.

Export price index

The main contributors to the fall were:

  • Metalliferous ores and metal scrap (-16.9%), driven by a fall in demand for iron ore from China,
  • Coal, coke and briquettes (-6.2%), due to a fall in the price of metallurgical coal as global steel demand weakens, and
  • Non-ferrous metals (-12.7%), driven by a fall in manufacturing demand as renewed COVID-19 lockdowns in China slow economic activity.   

The main offsetting contributors were:

  • Gas, natural and manufactured (+34.9%), due to the price rise in oil-linked contracts and surging global demand, particularly in Europe, and
  • Crude fertilisers and crude minerals (+43.6%), driven by price rises for lithium, with demand increasing alongside electric vehicle sales.

Through the year, the Export Price Index rose 25.9%. The main contributors were:

  • Coal, coke and briquettes (+134.8%), and
  • Gas, natural and manufactured (+98.6%).

Import price index

The main contributors to the rise were:

  • Electrical machinery apparatus and appliances (+5.1%), driven by rising production costs and the depreciation of the Australian dollar,
  • Inorganic chemicals (+30.1%), driven by increased production costs of sodium hydroxide (caustic soda), primarily used in bauxite refining,
  • Articles of apparel and clothing (+6.8%), driven by higher material costs and the depreciation of the Australian dollar, and
  • Plastics in non-primary forms (+28.6%), due to increased input costs, including high energy prices.

The main offsetting contributor was:

  • Petroleum, petroleum products and related materials (-2.6%), reflecting an easing in global oil demand.

Through the year, the Import Price Index rose 19.3%. The main contributor was:

  • Petroleum, petroleum products and related materials (+76.1%).

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Use of price indexes in contracts

Price indexes published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) provide summary measures of the movements in various categories of prices over time. They are published primarily for use in Government economic analysis. Price indexes are also often used in contracts by businesses and government to adjust payments and/or charges to take account of changes in categories of prices (Indexation Clauses).

Use of Price Indexes in Contracts sets out a range of issues that should be taken into account by parties considering including an Indexation Clause in a contract using an ABS published price index.

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6457.0.

Changes in this issue

The Import Price Index and the Export Price Index have been reweighted for the September quarter 2022. These indexes are annually reweighted each September quarter, using import and export values. A detailed explanation of the reweighting methodology and data sources is available in the Methodology, under the heading Items and weights. The new weighting patterns are provided in the Appendix of this issue. As a consequence of the annual reweighting, the points contribution data for the June quarter 2022 shown in Tables 2, 8 and 17 have been updated from those published in the previous issue of this publication.

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