Economic growth puts district in strong position

25/01/2019 3:00 p.m.


Positive trends in the Ashburton District’s economy during the year to September 2018 quarter signals the district is in a healthy position, and that’s good news for locals and potential newcomers to the area, Ashburton Mayor Donna Favel says.

The Infometrics Quarterly Economic Review Monitor’s latest report shows that between the end of June and September last year, Ashburton’s economy grew 2.3 per cent (totaling $1,971 million), a significant improvement on the 1.1 per cent growth experienced in the same period in 2017.

“Things are looking good for our district. Our GDP is growing, many of our primary sector industries have had excellent returns on their exports, and retail spend is up $7 million on the same period the year before. Like any region, we aren’t immune to challenges, but this data indicates we’re in a pretty good position to face those hurdles as they come,” Mayor Favel said.

The report showed that retail trade in the district is expanding strongly, with a 6.1 per cent increase, totaling $90 million.

“One of the Council’s key projects is to help revitalise the Ashburton Central Business District. We want to see more people coming into town and supporting local businesses, and this positive growth in retail spend confirms the importance of this commitment,” explained Mayor Favel. “We want this growth to continue.”

Although dairy prices have come under pressure, the report showed other sections of the primary sector having enjoyed bumper returns, including forestry, meat and horticultural products, which all experienced 10 – 20 per cent higher export prices than a year ago.

Tourism expenditure was also up, with 8.9 per cent growth; a trend on par with the rest of the country.

“As a community, we are a resilient and connected lot, and I have always admired the way we get in and make things happen for the benefit of others. I am pleased to see our economic profile is also in a positive place. It certainly adds to our appeal as the district of choice for lifestyle and opportunity,” Mayor Favel added.

The Infometrics Quarterly Economic Review Monitor is part of a suite of economic profile resources that the Ashburton District Council has made freely available on its website. Users can also access an annual economic profile and a community profile that outlines socio-economic indicators, including population, migration, wellbeing, transport, skills and cultural diversity.

To see the Infometrics data, including the latest quarterly economic review, visit the Council website​. ​

Page reviewed: 25 Jan 2019 3:44pm