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Horowhenua economy measuring up

Horowhenua economy measuring up


Horowhenua's economic activity continues to grow with many sectors increasing at rates above regional and national averages.

The positive gains are shown in Infometrics economic monitoring, commissioned by Horowhenua District Council.

It shows GDP growing by 2% in the year to December 2013. Agricultural activity surged during the December quarter, driven by a massive lift in dairy activity with the industry buoyed by a combination of soaring world milk production prices and record milk production levels.

Horowhenua households are also becoming increasingly willing to spend and invest. Retail spending of $284 million last year was an increase of 3.8% to the previous year. The increase was nearly three times higher than that for the Manawatu-Wanganui region (1.4%) and also higher than nationally (3.4%).

The number of new cars registered in Horowhenua increased by 35.8% last year, higher than that for the region (10.7%) and nationally (15.7%). Commercial vehicle registrations also soared, up by 40.8%, aided by favourable vehicle prices and rising business confidence.

Residential building consents were up 12.7%, a real contrast to the region's decrease of 9.5%, while non-residential building consents increased by nearly 36%, also comparing very well against the regional increase of 24.2% and national increase of 5.5%.

Horowhenua's labour market is also improving with the unemployment rate dropping from 10.6 % to 9.5%.

Horowhenua Mayor Brendan Duffy says the fact that Horowhenua's economy continues to grow is proof the District is becoming a more attractive place to live, shop and do businesses.

"These results show strong signs of optimism and this is encouraging for our community, all of us."

ENDS

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