Thu, 30 Mar 2023

New Zealand GDP down 0.6 percent in Q4

16 Mar 2023, 12:30 GMT+10

WELLINGTON, March 16 (Xinhua) -- New Zealand's gross domestic product (GDP) fell 0.6 percent in the December 2022 quarter, following a 1.7 percent rise in the previous quarter, according to quarterly figures released by the statistics department Stats NZ on Thursday.

Nine of 16 industries experienced a decrease in activity compared with the September 2022 quarter, Stats NZ said.

Manufacturing was the biggest driver of the decrease, down 1.9 percent, it said.

"A fall in transport equipment, machinery, and equipment manufacturing corresponded to lower investment in plant, machinery and equipment, while reduced output in food, beverage and tobacco manufacturing was reflected in a drop in dairy and meat exports," Stats NZ national accounts industry and production senior manager Ruvani Ratnayake said.

Other downwards drivers included the industries of retail trade and accommodation, arts, recreation, and other services, as well as transport, postal and warehousing, Ratnayake said.

"We would typically see higher activity in industries linked to tourism such as accommodation, retail and transport, in what is usually the beginning of New Zealand's peak tourist season," Ratnayake said.

While the last of the travel restrictions were lifted in August 2022, the number of overseas visitors in the December 2022 quarter was still below pre-COVID levels, statistics show.

Business services, which make up approximately one-tenth of the economy, were up 3.3 percent, partially offsetting the falls in other parts of the economy. This was driven by rises in advertising and market research as well as computer system design and related services, Stats NZ said.

Household spending was flat, as decreased spending on durables, including audio visual equipment and furnishings, was offset by increased household spending on services, the statistics department said.

Other drivers of the 0.8 percent decrease in expenditure on the GDP were investment, down 1.9 percent, and government spending, down 2.4 percent, Ratnayake said.

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