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Released Date

Monday February 24 2020

Published by

HNZT

Horowhenua population growth reflected in increased demand for housing

Annual economic data released this week by Infometrics shows the Horowhenua economy has grown by 4.1%, surpassing $1billion in GDP as growth occurs across sectors.

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The data, which is generated annually, measures and compares the growth of the district with economic data from the rest of the country.

Commissioned by the Horowhenua New Zealand Trust for the Horowhenua community, the report shows where investment is needed says Chair Antony Young.

“There are great things happening in our region and our community is beginning to see its potential. Hitting the $1 billion GDP milestone is a massive achievement, and it’s up to us to back this up with the right infrastructure and opportunities for growth.”

Senior Economist for Infometrics, Brad Olsen, says that the growth has been supported by increased primary sector activity, construction efforts, and consumer activity.“Economic activity in the dairy farming sector rose 7.1%pa, with milk solids production up even as overall cow numbers declined, showing a focus on adding value in the sector. “

The construction sector also continues to expand, as building activity grows across the country. In Horowhenua, construction sector activity rose 6.0%pa and added nearly 70 jobs, as residential consent figures remained at double their long term average.

With population growth in Horowhenua above the national average, Mr. Olsen says this increased building effort is essential for getting people into homes.

“Additional construction efforts also have the effect of re-bolstering local economic activity. Both wholesale and retail trade sectors recorded strong growth, indicating businesses and households remain positive about the local economy and are opening their wallets”

Recent confirmation from Government on key infrastructure projects like the four-lane Ōtaki to North of Levin Expressway and growing local businesses will continue to support economic expansion in the Horowhenua.

Mr. Young says that the new expressway will see an $817 million investment in the region. “Not only will the new expressway make our roads safer, it will ease the traffic congestion in Levin, and improve our connection with the Capital. This will help us to grow the local economy and bring more jobs to the region.” The Regional Economic Profile also highlights an increase in job creation at 2.7% to 11,010 jobs and the average income lifting by 4.1% or nearly $2000 extra in earnings.

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