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Survey: Exporters want more Govt support

Survey: Exporters want more Govt support
Kiwi exporters want more government support, an ExportNZ survey shows.

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Kiwi exporters want more government support, an ExportNZ survey shows.

In fact, 65 percent of respondents in ExportNZ’s National Exporter Outlook Survey believe the government doesn’t do enough to encourage exports. The survey gathered responses from 236 exporters across New Zealand, who collectively represent over $3 billion in export sales.

Respondents ranked assistance for developing export markets as what they saw as their most urgent need from the government, with R&D ranked second and venture capital third.

However, the survey did show some export optimism.

A total of 66 percent of exporters said they expect an increase in export orders, in the survey where 61 percent of respondents were manufacturers. This means that despite the high kiwi dollar, there is still promise in that sector.

About half of our exporters are expecting profits will improve in the year ahead with another 36 percent thinking they will stay at the same level. The remaining 15 percent expect some deterioration.

The findings represent a slight slip back from the position in late 2010, as more exporters now expect profits to hold steady.

Nearly half the respondents (47 percent) identified exchange rate volatility as the key obstacle preventing them from exporting. or exporting more than currently.

Nonetheless, two-thirds of exporters see better times ahead.

Traders expect orders to rise significantly in the 12 months ahead; 17 percent are looking for a substantial rise, and 49 percent expect slow gains, which is slightly less optimistic than eight months ago.

Gains in the short term are less certain. In the three months ahead (till September) respondents expected export orders across all markets to remain as they were six months ago. 36 percent expect the same level with a further 36 percent expecting a slow rise. And 17 percent forecast a slight reduction. Just 7 percent expect a substantial rise and 4 percent a substantial decrease.

Another point of interest in the survey was that south-east Asia (including China) has become New Zealand’s second-largest export destination, overtaking the US and UK/Europe (Australia is our largest export market). This has occurred since the last survey, taken in November 2010.