Regional GDP data released today by Statistics New Zealand shows the importance of regions exploring all their economic opportunities, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says.The new research – Regional GDP for the years ended March 2007 to 2010 – follows the release of the Government’s first Regional Economic Activity Report in April. “Statistics New Zealand’s new regional GDP data provides a valuable insight into the economic performance of our 15 regions, Mr Joyce says. “It shows regions who have taken their economic opportunities, such as Taranaki, Southland and the West Coast, have significantly increased their GDP – despite the effects of the recession and the global financial crisis. “These are regions that have successfully balanced economic growth and jobs for families in their regions while looking after the environment.” Mr Joyce says alongside the Government’s annual Regional Economic Activity Report, which includes data on population, employment and household incomes, regional GDP will be a useful tool to monitor changes over time.Many regions have made further progress in the three years since the period covered by the regional GDP data, as New Zealand’s national economy has built momentum on the back of a number of more positive indicators and support from the Government’s economic programme. “It is my expectation stakeholders will want to use the regional GDP data to compare and contrast the economic fortunes of different regions around the country, and ask themselves what lessons and opportunities there are for growth and jobs in their region,” Mr Joyce says. “Nothing creates jobs and boosts incomes for New Zealand families better than business growth. For New Zealand to build a more productive and competitive economy, we need all of our regions to achieve to their potential.”
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