Primary exports to reach $48bn in 2020

Primary sector exports are forecast to lift more than 3 percent, according to the Ministry for Primary Industries' latest quarterly situation and outlook report.

The report, released yesterday, predicts primary industry exports will reach nearly $48 billion for the year to June 2020.

That would be a rise of more than 3 percent on the previous financial year and was an improvement from MPI's October forecast, which predicted the value of exports would drop by 0.1 percent.

MPI's economic data and analysis manager, Wido van Lijf, said many sectors were performing well at the moment.

van Lijf said dairy export revenue was forecast to rise 8.4 percent to $19.6b, supported by robust global dairy prices and a weak outlook for the New Zealand dollar.

Meanwhile, horticulture sector revenue was forecast to rise 4.7 percent, driven by increases in kiwifruit, wine, and apple and pear exports.

Demand for lamb and beef was also strong, due to a protein shortage in China, he said.

"Again, prices [are] really really strong in international markets and that is largely being driven by African Swine Fever that's going through China," he said.

Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor said during a time of change in the primary sectors, the positive outlook was a testament to each and every person working in the sector.

"Our nation's farmers and growers produce some of the highest quality food and fibre in the world - and the world knows it. They are bringing home record export returns and that's something for them to be really proud of," O'Connor said.

This article was originally published on RNZ and re-published with permission.

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