Statistics and Surveys

by Simon Lord

last updated 31/03/2017

Opportunities abound as regional economies grow

by Simon Lord

last updated 31/03/2017

31 March 2017 – The latest figures from Statistics New Zealand show growing economic activity in 12 out of 15 regions. That means new business opportunities for franchisees and franchisors.
Regional GDP figures. Part of an infographic supplied by Statistics NZ (see link in article for complete infographic)

New figures released by Statistics New Zealand show that there is considerable growth in many parts of the country, with the Bay of Plenty out-stripping Auckland. This will come as good news to anyone looking to escape city life and move to the regions – an increasingly attractive option for many people. The availability of franchise opportunities in many of those areas also offers business and employment opportunities that can help turn a dream into a reality.

The figures are also valuable for New Zealand franchisors and those looking to enter the country from overseas. Overseas franchisors, especially, often find it hard to get to grips with the dynamics of New Zealand’s small and often dispersed population. See full infographic here.

Regional gross domestic product (GDP) is a geographic breakdown of national-level GDP, which is New Zealand's official measure of economic activity. The figures below are expressed in nominal terms. Provisional estimates for the period March 2015 to March 2016 show that:

  • The GDP of 12 of the 15 regions increased. The Bay of Plenty recorded the largest percentage increase (7.7 percent), followed by Auckland (6.0 percent) and Otago (4.8 percent). The national increase was 4.1 percent.
  • The GDP of three regions decreased. Taranaki's decrease was the largest, falling 8.5 percent. The West Coast fell 2.8 percent and Southland fell 1.0 percent
  • Of the other main urban centres, Wellington increased by 3.6 percent, narrowly exceeding Canterbury’s 3.5 percent increase.
  • Auckland’s contribution to national GDP increased to 37.2 percent in 2016. Wellington's contribution dropped slightly to 13.5 percent, Canterbury's was unchanged at 13.2 percent. The West Coast region had the smallest contribution to national GDP with 0.6 percent, slightly less than Gisborne’s 0.7 percent.
  • In 2016 Taranaki retained its position as the region with the highest GDP per capita at $71,297, followed by Wellington, $67,888, and Auckland, $58,717. The national average was $54,178.

New Zealand’s total GDP was $251.8 billion in 2016. The North Island contributed 77.1 percent to total GDP, compared with 22.9 percent for the South Island. Over the past 20 years, surveys have generally estimated the turnover of New Zealand’s flourishing franchise sector at some 10 percent of GDP. If that were to continue, next month’s Franchising New Zealand survey would need to show some $25 billion turnover for the franchise sector, up from 20 billion in 2012.

Here’s a handy infographic – New Zealand's regional economies 2016 visually presents the key measures of the 15 regional economies.

See also ...

Stats show which regions growing fastest as-immigration drives population growth.

The advantages of moving to the regions

Why move to the regions to start a business?

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