Hawke's Bay has experienced a 2.7 per cent rise in economic growth – the third highest region in New Zealand.
Despite an overall nationwide decrease in economic activity in the September quarter, the region rebounded strongly thanks to construction activity, the primary sector and domestic tourism.
According to the latest Infometrics Quarterly Economic Monitor, only Tasman (+5.1 per cent) and Northland (+3 per cent) experienced a larger increase in economic growth in the September quarter, while New Zealand as a whole saw a 3.2 per cent decrease.
Infometrics senior economist Brad Olsen said a combination of construction activity, the primary sector and meat, fish and wine exports have helped increase regional economic activity in the Hawke's Bay.
"Construction activity in Hawke's Bay has been strong in the last quarter, with residential consents up 58 per cent - the top regional residential consents result," he said.
"The primary sector is holding up well, with exports still showing considerable resilience, while meat, fruit, and wine exports are also showing annual growth, which is supporting local Hawke's Bay producers and manufacturers who are spending in the local economy."
Domestic tourism activity has helped support local economies, according to Olsen.
"The 2020/21 summer will be a tough period for the tourism sector, and the year ahead still shows considerable challenges. But the strong rebound in economic activity has provided New Zealand with the strongest foundation from which to rebuild," he added.
Turley & Co property strategist Pat Turley said a recent increase in domestic tourism bodes well for all sectors moving forward.
"Hawke's Bay is surprisingly busy considering Covid uncertainties," he said. "People are not travelling internationally, so they are going on holiday more domestically and Hawke's Bay is one of those destinations.
"There is an anticipation that the region is going to have a good summer as a result of that."
Turley also said within the property sector, low interest rates were a primary driver for an intensified market in recent weeks.
Olsen said while some areas of New Zealand have recorded a strong bounce back in economic activity, others continue to struggle as the economy operates below potential, with more people out of work and spending activity directed into other regions and industries.
Auckland (-6.1 per cent) and Wellington (-4.4 per cent) were the two regions with the largest decreases in economic activity.
Half of the 16 regions nationwide recorded a decrease.
Olsen said Hawke's Bay households have also been resilient, with a strong bounce in spending in the region.
"The surge in activity in the September 2020 quarter was stronger than anyone expected earlier in the year and highlights New Zealand's ability to swiftly respond to the Covid-19 pandemic," he said.
Olsen said spending activity across New Zealand was 3.0 per cent higher than a year earlier, while 'buy local' campaigns encouraging Kiwis back their local firms and workers.