Northern cities and mining areas show highest economic growth

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

The new Industry Insights report from the Office of the Chief Economist shows northern Australia’s strongest economic growth has been in its cities and mining centres.

The Flexibility and growth report says the north’s growth patterns are in line with growth Australia-wide over the past 15 years, with activity concentrated in and around our major cities and in resource-intensive regions during the mining boom.

The report shows economic activity has grown faster in Darwin than in the rest of the Northern Territory; and says, over the past 15 years, the Pilbara mining region recorded higher economic growth activity than in any other sub-state region in northern Australia. Areas around the Bowen Basin in Queensland also exhibited strong growth.

However, the report shows that since the end of the investment phase of the mining boom, growth in mining regions around Australia has been negative.

It attributes the concentration of economic growth in cities largely to the benefits arising from businesses working in close proximity; them having better access to labour and consumer markets, specialised suppliers, economies of scale, knowledge spill-overs and lower transport costs.

Industry Insights reports replace the Australian Industry Report and will provide analysis of Australian economic and industry issues in a shorter and more frequent format.

Future editions will look at Australia’s changing global economic position and how we can capitalise on new technologies to improve productivity.

Read the Flexibility and growth report which is the first of three Industry Insights reports to be released in 2018.