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Taranaki – the land of milk & money Back to News
17th December 2012 03:00am
As we suspected, Taranaki’s economy is surging ahead as the country’s star performer again. 

“We’re a turbo-charged region, economically-speaking” says Stuart Trundle, Chief Executive, Venture Taranaki. 

Venture Taranaki’s latest Taranaki Business Survey results reaffirm the region’s heightened work programme and economic outlook, recording strongly optimistic projections on sales and industry growth. 

“We are seeing some of the strongest growth projections since the survey began in the 1990s and investment confidence levels are incredibly positive.”

65 percent of Taranaki businesses expect sales to increase over the next half year, up from 36 percent in June this year and the highest result recorded since 1999. 

The survey, sent to 1,000 Taranaki businesses, showed that optimism is also prevailing in their own industries, with 47.2 percent expecting an improving industry landscape, 43.7 percent anticipating the status quo and just 7.5 percent of businesses expecting deteriorating conditions over the next year. 

“The region’s businesses have reinforced the perception that Taranaki is the sweet spot of the national economy, and that the region’s momentum is expected to continue,” says Stuart Trundle, Chief Executive of Venture Taranaki, the regional development agency for the province.

This optimism is flowing through to staffing, with a record 30 percent of Taranaki businesses expecting employee growth, with 27 percent currently experiencing a skills shortage or difficulties in hiring, up from 23 percent in June this year. This is the highest level since 1999.
The concerns of businesses have also changed to reflect this. While fuel and electricity costs are the greatest concerns, the threat of labour availability has surged over the last six months to be the third greatest concern, while wage rates, a declining market, material costs and the exchange rate are all of lower concern than they were in June.

“Taranaki’s rate of unemployment is the lowest in the country. As a region we’ve boosted our efforts to attract more people to the region to help our businesses get the skilled people they need,” Stuart says. 

“So far we’ve had a good response, but our top ten oil and gas industry businesses predict 230 vacancies over the next year alone.”

“2013 is looking like being another strong year for the Taranaki regional economy.”

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