ANZ General Manager Regional Commercial Banking, Mark Hand said: “The Australian economy is well into recovery mode and regional Australia looks set to follow with renewed optimism in the agriculture and natural resources sectors driving jobs growth.
“Regional Australia’s population growth is also benefiting from the record levels of immigration and in the last year has increased by 1.75%, representing an influx of around 130,000 people. This will keep rural economies ticking over as well as attracting increased investment in infrastructure and services,” he said.
Key findings in the report include:
• Regional Australia still represents a third of the Australian population.
• ANZ estimates the current regional unemployment rate in Australia of 5.8% is at its peak - identical to the whole of Australia peak unemployment rate reached in midSeptember 2009.
• Regional Australia’s labour market is on the cusp of jobs growth and a falling unemployment rate.
• While Australia and regional Australia both avoided a recession in the latest global downturn, pockets of weakness still exist. On ANZ’s analysis, out of the 24 regions (5 metro and 19 regional), 11 regions experienced a ‘recession’.
• Regional house price growth was weakest in Western Australia. Regional Tasmania and Queensland recorded modest growth of 3%, but house price growth in the Northern Territory remained exceptionally strong.
• Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland have recorded the highest increases in population.
The report highlights region-by-region trends across Australia for employment, housing and population growth for regional and rural Australia. The ANZ Regional and Rural Report is available at ANZ Economics.