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Top report card for North Shore City economy

Top report card for North Shore City economy

North Shore City's economy is growing at the fastest rate in the Auckland region, an increase of 4.7 per cent over the year to March 2002 according to an independent report by Infometrics.

The city's economy grew twice as fast as its population over the same period.

Just released, the Infometrics report identifies the communications, business and property services and wholesale industries as the major contributors to North Shore City's economic acceleration. The fastest economic growth was recorded by two of the city's smaller industries - transport, and accommodation and café retailers.

North Shore City's deputy mayor, Dianne Hale, says the report is good news for the city which is currently developing its first economic development strategy in consultation with the local community.

"We encourage entrepreneurs with high technology and low environmental impact to set up business in North Shore City, to create high value and challenging local jobs for residents, now and in the future," she says.

"Our council has backed initiatives such as the e-centre at Albany's Massey University to help grow local businesses and the city's economy by reversing the brain drain and protecting the talent within our shores," Councillor Hale says.

Other key points in the Infometrics report, full copies of which are available by visiting North Shore City's website www.northshorecity.govt.nz.

* Population growth and relatively low interest rates have boosted the real estate market in North Shore City, with house sales (48 per cent) and new house building consents (40 per cent) well up * Rising house prices (13 per cent) have bolstered household wealth and encouraged household spending in the city * Employment growth has been healthy over 2002 - the number of people receiving an unemployment benefit fell 20 per cent over the year to the December 2002 quarter * Retail spending in the city matched the national rate of increase (8 per cent) over 2002 * Retail, wholesale and construction (building and infrastructure) activity are set to generate economic growth of 3 per cent in North Shore City during 2003 * More international students continue to boost the city's education industry * Tourism-focused businesses and manufacturing will suffer due to the higher value of the New Zealand dollar and slow global economic growth.

Dianne Hale says North Shore City Council's top priority is to protect the city's valued natural environment.

"However, we want to strike the right balance so we also support a growing economy and the creation of more local jobs to maintain that quality of life," she says.

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