For the sixth consecutive quarter the Bay's regional economic confidence has risen.

Results from the Westpac McDermott Miller Regional Economic Confidence survey released today, saw a net 33 percent of respondents feeling more positive about where the region is headed, a massive surge over an already-solid 14 percent in December last year.

The report said concerns about El Niño decimating the region's horticulture and meat and wool fortunes "largely failed to become reality", and horticulture in particular has actually been really strong.

It said the region was far less exposed to dairy than many other parts of the country, and its unemployment rate is down.


"Growing air travel capacity into the region and higher hotel prices in the main cities mean more tourism growth for both Gisborne and Hawke's Bay is beginning to flow through as
"Results will be mixed across a geographic area as large as this, but the overall story is up."