MURRAY REGION: Factories, farming the big employers

Murray Now chairwoman Barbara Hull said promoting industry was vital to selling the region. Picture: DAVID THORPE

Murray Now chairwoman Barbara Hull said promoting industry was vital to selling the region. Picture: DAVID THORPE

MANUFACTURING and agriculture go hand-in-hand in the Murray region — most of the products made involve food.

When combined the two sectors account for about a quarter of the region’s economy.

These key points are highlighted in the eighth annual Murray Now Regional Profile, released in Albury yesterday.

Agriculture, forestry and fishing remain the largest industry group in the Murray region, contributing more than 14 per cent of gross product in 2012-13.

That was a 4 per cent lift increase from 2006-07.

Manufacturing has lifted marginally to 10.8 per cent of the Murray economy, while health care and other “social assistance” tallies just below 10 per cent.

Other major contributions to gross product come from several sectors — construction, retail trade, public administration and safety, education and trade and financial and insurance services.

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These categories each contribute between 5 to 7 per cent of the gross product for the region, which takes in an area stretching from Corryong and Tumbaramba west to the South Australian border.

The report said more than $450 million in residential buildings were approved last year, a 5.3 per cent increase on 2012 — and up 7.8 per cent in five years.

The report reveals how the Murray region has been experiencing steady population growth of 0.4 per cent a year over the past 10 years to reach 323,973 residents.

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