Trade continues to underpin our nation's prosperity as Australia's total trade in goods and services reached a record $673 billion last year.

Trade contributed 1.4 percentage points to overall growth of 2.4 per cent, while export growth was driven by an 8 per cent increase in volumes in 2016, according to the Composition of Trade, Australia 2016 report released today.

Exports rose 5 per cent to $330 billion, with iron ores & concentrates and coal combined accounting for 29 per cent of total exports.

Australia's services sectors performed strongly, with significant growth in the number of tourists and students visiting our shore, driving an increase of 9 per cent in services exports and underscoring the strength of Australia's transition to broader-based economy activity.

Education-related travel services were a star performer rising 18 per cent to $22 billion.

China again took out the mantle of Australia's top trading partner, a position held since 2009.

In 2016, two-way trade was valued at $155 billion or 23 per cent of total trade.

The United States was Australia's second largest trading partner at $64 billion, followed by Japan at $61 billion.

Gold exports rose 30 per cent to $19 billion, while natural gas rose 9 per cent to $18 billion.

The full report is available on the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website.

Media enquiries

  • Trade Minister's Office: (02) 6277 7420
  • DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555