Robust Economy

Australia is in its 27th year of consecutive annual economic growth – the only developed economy in the world to achieve this distinction.

The country has strong institutions, an ability to respond to global changes and above average productivity in global growth sectors. These factors underpin its steady growth and make it a low-risk destination to do business.

Australia’s economy is:

  • the world’s 13th largest
  • rated AAA by all three global rating agencies
  • forecast to realise average annual real GDP growth of 2.8 per cent over the next five years – the highest among major advanced economies
  • characterised by high productivity levels, with 15 out of 20 industries rating above the global average.

Charts from the Benchmark Report

The Australia Benchmark Report provides rich data demonstrating why there is no better place than Australia to do business. The report examines five key reasons for investing in Australia – Robust Economy, Dynamic Industries, Innovation and Skills, Global Ties and Strong Foundations – and compares Australia’s credentials with other countries.

Charts can be downloaded and saved as images for use in reports and presentations (when using please reference www.austrade.gov.au)

World's 13th Largest Economy
1. World’s 13th largest economy
The Australian economy is forecast to be the 13th largest in the world and the fifth largest in the Asian region in 2018, despite the fact the country is home to only 0.3 per cent of the world’s population. Australia’s nominal GDP is estimated at US$1.5 trillion (A$1.9 trillion) and accounts for 1.8 per cent of the global economy. Australia has almost tripled the value of its total production from two decades ago.
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27th Year of Consecutive Annual Economic Growth
2. 27th year of consecutive annual economic growth
Growing more than three per cent on average each year since 1992, Australia is the only major developed economy to have recorded no annual recessions from 1992 to 2017 and is now in its 27th year of consecutive growth. The Australian economy’s resilience is sustained by robust policy frameworks, strong institutions, sophisticated financial systems, an attractive investment environment and deep trade ties with the Asian region.
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Highest Growth Among Advanced Economies
3. Highest growth among advanced economies
Australia’s economic growth has outperformed its peers for the past two decades and the fundamentals are in place for this trend to continue. Australia is expected to realise average annual real GDP growth of 2.8 per cent between 2018 and 2022 – the highest among major advanced economies and up from an average growth rate of 2.4 per cent between 2013 and 2017.
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Strong Ties to Asia Support Long-Term Growth
4. Strong ties to Asia support long-term growth
Australia’s medium- and long-term growth outlook is supported by its strong ties to the Asian region. By 2022, the regional economy is expected to account for 45 per cent of global production (US$168 trillion) in terms of purchasing power parity valuation, more than double the ratio in 1982. Over the same period, the combined economies of China and India will likely represent almost 30 per cent of the world’s GDP, significantly up from less than six per cent in 1982.
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High Productivity in Growth Sectors
5. High productivity in growth sectors
The productivity levels of 15 out of 20 Australian industries rate above the average productivity of global competitors in the same sector. Australia is performing 20 per cent above this global average in five key growth sectors – gas, education, oil, tourism and health – and over 40 per cent in mining and agribusiness.
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Diversified, Services-Based Economy
6. Diversified, services-based economy
Australia’s services sector (including construction) accounts for three-quarters of real gross value added (GVA). The country’s sophisticated financial and insurance services industry is the largest contributor to its economy, generating 9.4 per cent of total GVA. Other top sectors include construction, health care and social assistance, professional, scientific and technical services, manufacturing and mining.
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Steadily Growing Services and Technology Sectors
7. Steadily growing services and technology sectors
Australia’s services sector has expanded by an average of 3.6 per cent per annum since 1992, above the goods sector’s average of 2.2 per cent. Information media and telecommunications, professional, scientific and technical services, and financial and insurance services have seen solid annual growth rates of above four per cent, reflecting the country’s skills base in technology- and knowledge intensive sectors.
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Low Government Debt
8. Low Government debt
The IMF estimates the Australian Government’s net debt will be around 20 per cent of GDP in 2018, well below the 72 per cent forecast for advanced economies as a group. Australian Government debt is predicted to fall below 16 per cent of GDP by 2022, while the average debt ratio of advanced economies will remain high at around 69 per cent of GDP. The low level of public sector debt reinforces the Australian Government’s healthy financial position and sound economic credentials, and underpins its strong sovereign credit ratings.
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