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RealTime IT News

IT&T Domestic Production in Decline

The production of IT&T equipment in Australia is falling despite steady growth in rest of the industry, with the domestic market now importing more than three times as much computer equipment as it is making, according to new figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

The ABS reports a 27% drop in the local production of computer and telecommunications equipment in the three years to 1998/99, further offset by a jump in imports.

In 1998/99, imports of PC and telecommunications products had climbed 21% to reach AUS$10 million (US$6 million), while income from manufacturing was also down 33% from the previous survey in 1995/96.

The downturn in manufacturing has also affected jobs, with employment in the manufacturing sector slumping 42% during the survey period. Other sectors to record falls in employment include wholesale (11%) and telecommunication services (18%).

However, income across the IT&T sector as a whole continued to rise, growing by 21% to reach AUS$59 billion (US$35.4 billion) in 1998/99. Telecommunication services recorded the largest increase, with income up 40%.