Western Australia’s economy continues to demonstrate its strength and importance to the national economy, with figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showing the State’s economy grew by 1.4 per cent in 2019-20.
This growth was the strongest of all Australian States, with real Gross State Product (GSP) growing to $292.3 billion, up $4.1 billion from 2018-19.
The Western Australian economy has grown for three consecutive years of the McGowan Government, after the only contraction on record in the final year of the previous Liberal National Government.
The ABS report also showed the national economy, measured by Gross Domestic Product (GDP), contracted by 0.3 per cent and had it not been for WA’s significant contribution the national economy would have contracted by 0.6 per cent.
In contrast, the largest driver of the contraction in the national economy was from New South Wales, which shrank by $4.2 billion in 2019-20, and accounted for over three quarters of the $5.6 billion contraction in national GDP.
WA continues to punch above its weight with a 15 per cent share of national GDP in 2019-20, almost 50 per cent higher than its population share of 10.4 per cent.
WA’s domestic economy, measured by State Final Demand (SFD), grew by 0.9 per cent, the only State to record growth in 2019-20.
The largest contributor to the expansion in the Western Australian economy was business investment, which grew by 9.4 per cent – the first growth in seven years.
The next largest contributor growth was net exports, which grew by 2.4 per cent.
The continued operation of the mining industry, including exports and construction activity, through COVID-19 has been particularly important to the State and national economies, with 4.9 per cent growth in the sector in 2019-20.
Household consumption contracted by 2.4 per cent in 2019-20, as a result of those sectors – including hotels, cafés and restaurants, and transport – most impacted by COVID-19 restrictions in the June quarter.
The hospitality sector has rebounded strongly since the lifting of restrictions, while the transport sector is expected to continue to be impacted by international travel restrictions.
As stated by Treasurer Ben Wyatt:
“This is a massive result for the WA economy in a most extraordinary year.
“The impact of COVID-19 will continue to be felt but the resilience of the WA economy is obvious.
“The result highlights the momentum building in the WA economy prior to the impact of COVID-19 and why our economy has rebounded so solidly.
“Once again we are seeing data highlighting WA as the largest contributor to growth for the national economy.
“This further affirms the McGowan Government’s safe and strong response to the COVID-19 pandemic and sensible financial management over the last three and half years.”