SA export growth outpaces nation

07 Nov 2023
For the second consecutive month, South Australia is leading the nation in export growth – surpassing national growth figures six-fold.
Latest ABS data shows SA’s export growth grew 14 per cent, while Australia’s export figures grew 2.5 per cent.
Key Asian markets drove the nation-leading growth, with SA one of only two states to record an increase for the year ending September 2023, again beating WA at 8.9 per cent.
India proved a vital export destination for the State, up 11 per cent to $1.1 billion over the past 12 months.
The strong result comes ahead of Trade and Investment Minister Nick Champion’s trade mission to India this month.
The visit will seek to capitalise on the Australia-India Economic Co-operation and Trade Agreement (AI-ECTA) that came into effect on 29 December 2022, removing tariffs on a vast majority of exports.
India – SA’s fifth largest market – again saw a surge in lentils (up 231 per cent to $505 million), almonds (up 770 per cent to $10 million), wheat (renewed import totalling $33.8 million) and a spike in beans (up 1,603 per cent).
China also experienced strong growth and remains SA’s number one export destination, up 44 per cent to $2.9 billion.
Future growth potential comes as the trading relationship between Beijing and Canberra continues to stabilise ahead of Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese’s meeting with President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Qiang in coming days. 
Increased demand for South Australian iron ore and concentrates (up 40 per cent to $1.1 billion), almonds (up 17 per cent to $111 million) and cheese (up 300 per cent) fuelled China’s export growth.
It follows the removal of trade impediments on products such as hay and barley along with a five-month review of tariffs on Australian wine.
Barley, which re-entered the Chinese market after the impediments imposed in late-2020 were lifted, totalled $12.4 million as it begun to approach May 2020 export levels.
South Australian exporters will seek to further this growth at the China International Import Expo next week, showcasing the State’s premium produce at one of the world’s largest trade events.
Four of South Australia’s top five export destinations are in Asia, including Malaysia (up 7 per cent to $1.3 billion) and Thailand (up 91 per cent to $1.1 billion).