GDP figures: New Zealand records 2.0 percent increase in September quarter

New Zealand recorded a 2 percent increase in gross domestic product (GDP) in the September quarter, Statistics NZ revealed on Thursday.

It comes after a revised 1.9 percent rise in the June 2022 quarter. The latest rise was driven primarily by the services industries, up 2 percent.

The transport, postal and warehousing industry was the biggest contributor to growth, up 9.7 percent.

"With borders opening to all visitors in the September 2022 quarter, we have seen more spending on both international and domestic air travel," Stats NZ national accounts industry and production senior manager Ruvani Ratnayake said.

"The business services industry also contributed to the result, driven by computer system services, recruitment services and travel agency and tour arrangement services."

Goods-producing industries rose 2.4 percent driven by construction, up 5.1 percent. 

The rise in construction was mirrored by increases in residential building, non-residential building, and infrastructure investment.

Spending on transport equipment and plant, machinery and equipment also rose in the quarter.

Investment and exports were the leading contributors to a 2 percent increase in the expenditure measure of gross domestic product.

Exports of goods and services rose 7.8 percent, driven by higher exports of dairy products, travel services, and meat products.

Somewhat offsetting these increases were falls in central government expenditure and household consumption.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson said the latest GDP figures are "another solid result" and show the strength of New Zealand's economy.

"The latest economic indicators suggest the momentum has continued into the December quarter. There are signs however that activity will slow from there.

“Government actions to grow the economy means we are in a stronger position than before the pandemic.

New Zealand is as well placed as any other country to face the shifting global conditions, with low unemployment, growing exports, a rebound in tourist numbers and a healthy set of Government books. Our economic plan is working for Kiwis," Robertson said.

He said the Government will continue to "focus on supporting New Zealanders with cost of living pressures while carefully and responsibly managing the Government’s finances that the Treasury noted is helping reduce demand pressures".

The figures come after Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr last month admitted to deliberately engineering a recession to slow spending. 

Orr also apologised to New Zealanders as the country braces for dark economic times and the cost of living skyrockets.

September's growth is expected to be followed by two quarters of low economic expansion before a contraction and recession in the last three quarters of next year, Reserve Bank and Treasury forecasts show.