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Demand from Asia helps Australian trade balance back into surplus


14:20, May 07, 2013

CANBERRA, May 7 (Xinhua) -- Australia recorded a seasonally- adjusted trade surplus of 307 million A.U. dollars (almost 315.13 million U.S. dollars) in March, as strong demand from Asia helped deliver the first positive balance since December 2011, Trade Minister Craig Emerson said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Unlike much of the world, Australia's economy is resilient, though our future is not assured," Emerson said today.

"The continued expansion of Asia's middle class and the diversification of Australian exports, as set out in the White Paper of Australia in the Asian Century, will help maintain job creation and economic growth," he said.

The March figure of the trade balance of goods and services, released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), represents a 418 million A.U. dollars improvement on the revised 111 million A.U. dollars deficit in February.

The ABS reported that total exports of goods and services for March were worth 25.7 billion A.U. dollars, 0.6 percent higher than the total in February. Imports fell 1.1 percent to 25.4 billion U.S. dollars.

According to the figures, Asia accounted for much of the rebound, with merchandise exports to China up 16.5 percent on the previous month. The value of shipments to Japan, meanwhile, rose more than 13 percent. Merchandise exports to the 10 ASEAN economies increased by 9 percent.

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