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Strong outlook for Manawatū region in 2014

Strong outlook for Manawatū region in 2014

The latest Manawatū Economic Outlook report highlights a strong outlook for economic growth in the Manawatū region, particularly over 2014.

The 1 January 2014 increase in the interim milk pay-out price, strong growth in the value of residential building consents in the second half of 2013, improved migration and strong growth in visitor spending are among the factors supporting stronger growth in the region.

Rodney Wong, Acting Chief Executive of Vision Manawatū, welcomed news that work on the new Fonterra $230 million milk powder dryer in Pahiatua has started. Fonterra has estimated around 600 jobs will be created during the construction of the facility and 45 permanent jobs when the plant opens in September 2015.

“A further boost to economic activity is expected when US-based company Proliant begins building its $24 million bovine blood plasma processing facility on the edge of Feilding. Around 30 staff are expected to be employed in the facility when it is completed,” Mr Wong said.

GDP growth in the Manawatū region was 2.0% in the year to September, despite a weakening in growth in the June quarter. The weaker growth in the June quarter reflects the short-term impact of the drought earlier in the year. Dairy cows were dried off earlier, reducing milk production in the June quarter, while more livestock were slaughtered in the March quarter, reducing volumes in the June quarter.

Chief Executive of Destination Manawatū, Lance Bickford said tourism spending data showed the region is experiencing strong growth in domestic and international visitor spending.

Domestic visitor spending in Manawatū District rose by 13% in the three months to October (compared with the same period last year) while Palmerston North increased by 8%. Domestic visitor spending in New Zealand increased by 1%.

The Manawatū Region Economic Outlook report is produced by Palmerston North City Council and a copy of the full report can be found at pncc.govt.nz


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