The Coromandel economy grew by 3.3 per cent in 2016, and the indicators are that spending and investment is set to continue, according to the latest data provided by Infometrics, an independent company that provides economic analysis and forecasts.

Mayor Sandra Goudie said she and the TCDC were "extremely pleased" to see the positive trends for the District.

"But it also shows that we need to have strong strategies and solid planning in place so we can respond effectively and efficiently," Mrs Goudie said.

"That's why a major focus for us is about land zoning and planning, as well as maintaining and developing our core infrastructure including roading, water and wastewater."


The Coromandel's tourism sector enjoyed a bumper 2016, with data showing that visitor spending totalled $337m in 2016, up 7.7 per cent from its 2015 level. International visitor spending climbed 19 per cent to $83.5m in 2016, while spending by New Zealand visitors grew 4.4 per cent to reach $254m.

A buoyant housing market has seen pressures mount within the Coromandel, with both rent and house price growth elevated.

Infometrics data for the December quarter saw rental inflation reach 9.5 per cent per year in the district, which is an all-time high.

Meanwhile, data for the December quarter saw the average house price for Thames-Coromandel increase 14 per cent (national average was an increase of 13 per cent).

The average house price in the district is $604,872, while the national average house price is $607,808.

Housing market pressures are also creating incentives to build, with home building consents rising 41 per cent on the Coromandel over the past year.

A shortage of skilled and unskilled construction workers across the upper North Island is also still creating capacity issues, which also affects the district.

In 2016 the national average for residential consents increase by 10 per cent, while in the Coromandel it was a staggering 41 per cent increase. For non-residential consents the national average was 1.7 per cent, while the average for Coromandel region was 22 per cent.


Infometrics also produce a Regional Economic Profile which shows that employment growth has been strong in Thames-Coromandel, with the number of filled jobs climbing 3 per cent (350) in the March 2016 year. Accommodation and food services added 120 jobs, not surprising given the tourism sector's recent good performance.

Other key contributors included administrative and support services (110 jobs) and construction (100 jobs). This data also sheds light on where in our District this job creation occurred.

Employment in Mercury Bay rose by 157 to a total of 3,179, job numbers, in Coromandel-Colville it climbed by 132 to 1,253, and in Thames employment increased by 29 jobs to reach a total of 5,211. Tairua-Pauanaui (up 2 to 752) and Whangamata (down 8 to 1,488) both had relatively static job numbers.

Some other performance indicators from the Infometrics data includes:

* Resident population grew 2.2 per cent to 28,400, compared with the national average of 2.1 per cent. 700 came to the district in 2016 while 100 left.
* Industry within the Coromandel showed log prices rose to a record level in February, while seafood export prices climbed through 2016.
* Wholesalers in Thames that rely on spending by dairy farmers are likely to see a slight increase in activity in 2017 due to an increase in the farmgate milk price of more than 50 per cent from its 2015/16 level. Even so, farmers' first priority will be reducing debt levels so any spending lifts will be modest.