CANBERRA, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- Australia has passed Qatar to become the world's leading exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for the first time.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the nation exported 6.55 million tonnes of LNG in November, compared to Qatar's 6.27 million tonnes.
LNG is Australia's third-largest export commodity behind coal and iron ore, with exports of the three worth 165 billion Australian dollars (119.3 billion U.S. dollars) in the 12 months to the end of October 2018.
Coal remained the most valuable export commodity at 64.6 billion AUD (46.7 billion USD) followed by iron ore at 61.6 billion AUD (44.5 billion USD) and LNG at 38.8 billion AUD (28 billion USD).
The ABS said that LNG exports would spike 57 percent to 48 billion AUD (34.7 billion USD) in financial year 2018-19 while total export revenues would grow 11 percent to a record-high 252 billion AUD (182.3 billion USD).
Matt Canavan, Australia's Minister for Resources, said that the focus would now shift to holding on to the number one position.
"Staying on top is a lot harder than getting to the top," he told News Corp Australia on Friday.
"We must continue to work hard to attract investment because this export revenue and the jobs associated with it delivers so much benefit to Australia.