- Total live sheep export flows lifted by 79% from April to May to see 117,446 head of sheep transported.
- Live sheep flows from Australia to Kuwait over May increased 137% to see 89,144 head transported for the month.
- During May the UAE has seen live sheep export volumes from Australia rising by 140% to see 24,000 head transported.
The recent release of live export trade figures for May 2021 shows a solid lift in sheep exports to Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Australia’s largest and second largest live sheep export destinations this year. Total live sheep export flows lifted by 79% from April to May to see 117,446 head of sheep consigned to offshore destinations.
The monthly live sheep flows in May are the second highest recorded during the 2021 season, just 5% shy of the 124,277 head seen during March. Despite the strong rebound in May volumes remain 16% below the five-year average trend for May and have been running 45% under trend all season.
Interestingly, it is the first time since the start of 2021 that monthly volumes have been above the pattern set in 2020. However, the industry needs to get as much stock shipped as possible before the northern hemisphere summer moratorium puts a grinding halt to the trade.
Kuwait have increased the proportion of their share of the total trade from 42% in 2020 to 58% this year. Live sheep flows from Australia to Kuwait over May increased 137% to see 89,144 head transported for the month. This level represents volumes that are 106% above the five-year average for May, so it seems the Kuwaiti importer is keen to get volumes in ahead of the looming shutdown.
Indeed, this is the strongest monthly flows to Kuwait seen in exactly two years, when the May 2019 numbers just tipped over 90,000 head.
The UAE is also putting in a good show over May with trade volumes rising by 140% to see 24,000 head transported, with the seasonal pattern for 2021 mirroring the trend set by Kuwait over the year, thus far.
Compared to the five-year average volumes for May the current year’s figures are 134% above the average pattern. Like the Kuwaiti experience, this is the highest monthly volumes transported to the UAE in exactly two years when the May 2019 report noted 25,000 head were transported.