Territory Stories

Budget 2013/14 Northern Territory Economy



Budget 2013/14 Northern Territory Economy

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Tabled paper 295


Tabled Papers for 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016; Tabled Papers; ParliamentNT




Tabled by David Tollner


Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory under Standing Order 240. Where copyright subsists with a third party it remains with the original owner and permission may be required to reuse the material.




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Department of the Treasury and Finance

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Overview 5 Northern Territory Economy MiniBudget, reflecting the announcement by the Territory Government in March 2013 to reduce the utilityprice increases. Territory wages growth, as measured by the Australian Bureau of Statistics wage price index is estimated to have moderated from 3.7percent in 2011-12 to 3.3percent in 2012-13. Wages growth moderated in both the private and public sectors. Slowing private sector wages growth is mainly due to weakness in a number of employment-intensive sectors such as tourism and retail, which has more than offset strong growth in wages in the construction sector. Slowing public sector wages growth reflects the outcomes of enterprise bargaining agreements for the general NorthernTerritory Public Sector negotiated in 2010-11, which set wages growth at 3per cent over 2012-13. Employment growth in the Territory is estimated to strengthen from 1.4percent in 2011-12 to 2.0percent in 2012-13. Weak demand for labour in the retail, tourism and public sectors over the year is expected to be more than offset by increasing demand for labour in the construction industry. The construction industry in the Territory is expected to have the strongest growth in employment over the year driven by the development of several major projects in the mining and manufacturing sectors, highlighted previously, as well as a rebound in residential construction activity. Outlook for 2013-14 to 2016-17 Economic growth in the Territory is forecast to strengthen to 2014-15 when it is forecast to peak at 7.0per cent. Growth over this period will be underpinned by an acceleration of construction activity related to the development of the Ichthys project. Residential construction activity is expected to increase to near record levels over this period, driven by the construction of housing in the Darwin region. Growth in household consumption is expected to continue strengthening to 2014-15, driven by strengthening population and employment growth and low interest rates. Economic growth in the Territory is forecast to moderate to 4.5percent in 2015-16 as construction activity for major projects is completed and the bulk of the non-resident workforce for these projects depart the Territory. Despite forecasts of significant declines in construction activity in 2016-17 and slowing employment and population growth, the Territory economy is forecast to grow by 3.9percent in 2016-17. This reflects the drivers of growth in the economy shifting from the construction sector to the export sector as liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from the newly built Ichthys LNG plant at Blaydin Point begin and alumina exports from the Pacific Aluminium refinery at Gove return to capacity following the completion of the proposed gas to Gove project, which is currently subject to due diligence. After reaching historically high levels in 2012-13, Territory SFD is forecast to decline over the forward estimate period to 2016-17. This reflects expenditure returning to long-term trend levels following the cessation of the distortionary payments for the Ichthys project in mid-2014. Wages Employment Gross State Product State Final Demand