The Waikato is Absolutely Booming
By Don Good, CEO, Waikato Chamber of Commerce
The Waikato is booming compared to the rest of New Zealand, and it’s based on solid foundations.
Our confidence in our economy was clearly articulated in the recent Westpac Mcdermott Miller Regional Economic Confidence Survey. We sit at a strong plus-16% net confidence for the September quarter, with every other region except Wellington at negative net confidence.
So why are we confident? One reason is the ‘trickle around’ theory that goes: one year’s great dairy payout results in three years of economic growth for the Waikato.
With now two and potentially three years of strong dairy returns, the export dollar foundations of the Waikato are looking strong.
However, we’re no longer solely reliant on dairy. We’re a region of manufacturers that are growing: you see the likes of Gallaghers, Prolife Foods, Profile Group, Porters, Power Farming, and recently you see Sleepyhead looking to set up in Ohinewai.
We have world-class tech firms such as Company-X, IT Partners, The Instillery, Aware Group, Shift72 and SkyPoint Technologies employing talented graduates out of The University of Waikato and Wintec Te Pukenga.
With a benign geography, we’re a region with rapid growth in sectors such as health, agtech, education, professional services, and importantly logistics.
The latter is evidenced by Tainui Group Holding’s wonderful Ruakura Superhub, Hamilton Airport’s Titanium Park development, the University’s Pa project, Innovation Park’s recently opened building, ACC’s new building on Collingwood St, as well as Foster’s Union Square development that houses Rabobank’s headquarters.
The evidence is in concrete. Businesses and their people are migrating to the Waikato.
Waikato is confident in our future, which attracts others seeking opportunity to live and grow. We have many major industries as our foundation; we have room to grow.
We have a chance to avoid congestion that so besets others. Our geography actually gives us a competitive advantage.
The Mighty Waikato will be a powerhouse of the New Zealand economy long into the future, as well as being a great place to live, to bring up families, to work, prosper and play.