Exports, export culture and the Australian economy
journal contributionposted on 05.06.2017, 02:01 by Shaw, Brendan, Hughes, Owen
This paper examines Australia's export performance and the reasons for that performance. Historical and comparative data is used to examine whether Australia is sufficiently export-oriented. Trends in Australia's exports-to-GDP ratio are compared with long term historical data and with comparative international data. Data examining the proportion of Australian firms which are exporting are also examined, providing some indication of whether Australia is developing an 'export culture'. The composition of Australian exports is also examined, both on a sectoral and commodity basis. The results show that Australia is not yet exporting sufficiently for a country of its size and stage of development. It is argued that the reason for this is Australia's traditional reliance on commodities and low to medium technology manufacturing for export revenue. It is suggested that industry-specific government strategies may be one way to facilitate the development of value-added export industries.