Full text: Borrowing and business in Australia

pared with the total estimated importation of gapitel: fomthe 
period, in an attempt to establish the exact velar boon 
these two facts in the situation. Later, the positidnBspablished 
under pre-war conditions will be compared with the Psk-War 
situation, and an endeavour made to indicate the "Bwasntial 
similarity between them. 
I. The Commodity Balance of Trade. 
The real significance of the total values of commodity exports 
and imports has already been broadly examined in connexion 
with the terms of trade. For the purpose of reckoning the 
balance of indebtedness over the whole period, however, a more 
accurate analysis is now necessary. Happily for our purpose, 
the Australian trade statistics are unusually complete and 
well arranged, and any elaboration of the data given in official 
publications is not called for. Beyond the actual tabulation of 
the figures for overseas trade little is required but a brief 
explanation of the method of recording exports and imports, 
and a short note or two upon the relevant table set out 
The recorded value of imported commodities represents the 
amount -orr-which ‘duty i§ payable, or would be payable if the 
duty were charged ad valorem. ‘The value of goods is taken 
to be 10 per cent. in advance of the fair market value in the 
principal markets of the country whence the goods were 
exported, the increase being roughly intended to represent 
the cost plus insurance, freight, and other charges to the 
place of landing’! Ten-elevenths of the recorded value has 
therefore been taken to represent the invoice value of inward 
cargoes. Since Australia is one of the chief producers of gold, 
the imports and exports of gold and coin have been included as 
ordinary items in the commodity balance. 
The recorded value of exports represents the value ‘in the 
ordinary commercial acceptance of the term’ in the principal 
markets of the Commonwealth. The gross trade figures, how- 
ever, are modified by imports from adjacent areas, e.g. the 
Pacific Islands and Papua, of commodities which come to 
1 Year Book of the Commonwealth, No. 3 (1910), p. 594.

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