Low global oil prices and a mix of trade across Port Taranaki’s wharves contributed to the value of exports shipped out of the port dropping to the lowest level in nearly two decades, in spite of export volumes increasing.
Figures from Statistics New Zealand showed the value of exports, including logs, oil and gas and animal feed, dropped to about $1.3billion to June last year.
The value of exports in this period was similar to levels last reached in 1999-2000.
At the same time export volumes increased 12 per cent on the back of strong methanol and log exports.
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Log export volumes last year rose 43 per cent from the previous year, while methanol exports reached 1.4m tonnes.
The trade increase enabled the company to post a net half year profit of $4.57 million, up 1.5 per cent on the previous half year result.
Between 1991 and 2016, export values from Port Taranaki climbed from around $900 million to a peak of around $3.8 billion in 2007-08 before starting an onward spiral downwards to the latest figure in June 2016 of about $1.3billion.
Port Taranaki chief executive Guy Roper said the mix of trade across the port’s wharves impacted on both export volumes and values.
Roper said export values did not necessarily follow export volumes.
Port Taranaki’s half-year export volumes to December 31 2016 were up 12 per cent from the previous year based on strong strong log and methanol volumes, he said.
However continuing lower global oil prices had impacted the overall value of exports leaving Port Taranaki.
“We are New Zealand’s key oil and gas port and a large portion of our business is tied to the oil and gas sector.
“With commodity prices for oil lower, naturally the value of exports from Port Taranaki is lower,”
Roper said the Taranaki Regional Council-owned company was optimistic oil and gas exploration, and production activity would soon pick up with commodity prices showing signs of improvement.
The company was diversifying across a range of sectors to continue to grow and develop, and provide world class logistics services to its customers, he said.