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Stable population growth to support building activity

Population growth figures released this week are good news for the residential building industry, according to the Housing Industry Association.

The latest ABS data shows Australia’s annualised population growth rate remained at 1.6% during the March 2019 quarter.

HIA Economist Angela Lillicrap said the stable population growth is a welcome development for the residential building industry as it recalibrates to a new equilibrium level.

“Residential building plays an important role in the economy and activity has been subdued for the past two years,” Ms Lillicrap said.

“Population growth is important for Australia to sustain ongoing economic performance, productivity and workforce capacity. Given Australia’s ageing population, attracting skilled workers from overseas has become increasingly important.

“Population growth in Australia has remained strong and stable for the past three years.”

Ms Lillicrap said the HIA has consistently held the view that it is prudent for governments to maintain a stable, well-rounded migration intake as part of an overall population policy.

“Dramatic changes in migration intake can create shocks in demand for businesses, including those in the residential building industry,” she said.

“Changes to migration policies that slow population growth risk adversely impacting Australia’s potential for economic growth.”

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