INTERNATIONAL MERCHANDISE TRADE INDEX - March 2016

FBoS Release No: 28, 2016
30th June 2016


The Terms of Trade [TOT] is a ratio of two price indexes: one for exports and the other for imports.
A rise in the index means that Fiji can buy more imports from the same amount of exports.

Key facts

The following movements occurred in the March quarter of 2016 when compared with the December quarter of 2015:

  • The international merchandise terms of trade price index fell by 0.2 per cent;
  • Export prices for goods fell by 0.5 per cent and
  • Import prices for goods fell by 0.3 per cent.

Table 1: Summary

imtiMar16a

Commentary

The seasonally unadjusted international merchandise TOT index for the March quarter of 2016 stood at 102.5. This is a decrease of 0.8 per cent over the March quarter of 2015.
The export price index decreased by 1.0 per cent and the import price index fell by 0.1 per cent.

Export Price Index

imtiMar16b


There were significant price changes in the following export and import items when comparisons were made to the December quarter of 2015 and March quarter of 2015 periods:

Changes over the December quarter of 2015

The overall Export Price Index [XPI] for the March quarter of 2016 stands at 103.9. A decrease of 0.5 per cent when compared to the December quarter of 2015 [104.4]. Contributing to this decrease were lower prices recorded for the following categories and specific items:

  • Prepared foodstuffs; beverages, spirits and vinegar; tobacco and manufactured tobacco substitutes decreased by 3.4 per cent due to low export prices of sugar and sugar confectionery cereals and beverages;
  • Mineral products decreased by 2.9 per cent due to low import prices of aviation fuel, kerosene, unleaded petrol, automotive diesel oil and industrial diesel oil and
  • Pulp of wood or of other fibrous cellulosic material; waste and scrap of paper or paperboard; paper and paperboard and articles thereof decreased by 1.3 per cent due to low export prices of cartons.

Changes over the March quarter of 2015

Compared to the March quarter of 2015 [104.9], the XPI for the December quarter of 2016 decreased by 1.0 per cent. Contributing to this decrease were lower prices recorded for the following categories and specific items:

  • Prepared foodstuffs; beverages, spirits and vinegar; tobacco and manufactured tobacco substitutes decreased by 4.4 per cent due to low export prices of sugar and sugar confectionery and beverages;
  • Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones, precious metals, metals clad with precious metal and articles thereof; imitation jewellery decreased by 2.4 per cent due to low export prices of gold and
  • Pulp of wood or of other fibrous cellulosic material; waste and scrap of paper or paperboard; paper and paperboard and articles thereof deceased by 2.1 per cent due to low export prices of cartons.

Import Price Index

imtiMar16c

Changes over the December quarter of 2015

The overall Import Price Index [MPI] for the March quarter of 2016 stands at 101.4. A decrease of 0.3 per cent when compared to the December quarter of 2015 [101.7]. Contributing to this decrease were lower prices recorded for the following categories and specific items:

  • Mineral products decreased by 2.2 per cent due to low import prices of aviation fuel, kerosene, unleaded petrol, automotive diesel oil and industrial diesel oil;
  • Pulp of wood or of other fibrous cellulosic material; waste and scrap of paper or paperboard; paper and paperboard and articles thereof deceased by 1.0 per cent due to low import prices of paper and paperboard and
  • Products of the chemical or allied industries decreased by 0.8 per cent due to low import prices of fertilizer, essential oils, soap and miscellaneous chemical products.

Changes over the March quarter of 2015

Compared to the March quarter of 2015 [101.5], the MPI for the March quarter of 2016 decreased by 0.1 per cent. Contributing to this decrease were lower prices recorded for the following categories and specific items:

  • Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones, precious metals, metals clad with precious metal and articles thereof; imitation jewellery decreased by 2.0 per cent due to low import prices of gold jewellery and imitation jewellery;
  • Vegetable products decreased 1.7 per cent due to low import prices of onions, shallots, garlic, grapes and apples;
  • Pulp of wood or of other fibrous cellulosic material; waste and scrap of paper or paperboard; paper and paperboard and articles thereof deceased by 1.5 per cent due to low import prices of paper and paperboard..

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For Technical Notes refer to page 9.
For further enquiries, please contact Ms. Uma Reddy on email or telephone 331 5822 (ext. 386 239) or direct line 323 0839.

The International Merchandise Trade Indexes (Prices) release for the June quarter of 2016 will be released by end of September, 2016.