Infometrics December newsletter
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December 2014

This is the first issue of our new-look newsletters.  Our aim is to bring you interesting articles and news about what’s happening in the New Zealand economy, as well as keeping you informed about new products and services that are available from Infometrics and how they can benefit your organisation.

In this issue, we take a look at regional inequality and benchmark New Zealand against a number of overseas economies.  We also whether central and local government have the right approach when it comes to providing facilities and services on a regional basis.

We’ve recently launched two new online products as well.  Our Community Profiles drill down into economic and demographic data below the local authority level, while our Sector Profiles provide a unique dynamic and interactive insight into employment and other data within specific user-defined sectors.

As we head into the festive season, we’ve also wrapped up the 2014 economy with our annual Christmas carol, and take a look forward at our key publication dates for 2015.

We trust you will enjoy our newsletter, and wish you all the best for your summer break.

How unequal are our regions?
Over the past year we have heard much about regional inequality, with the term "Zombie town" popping up every few weeks in the media. The debate has contributed to the perception of growing, prospering cities and declining rural areas. This article compares New Zealand’s regional income inequality with that of other countries around the world.
Getting regional facilities and services right
Wellington City Council has recently approved the construction of a 1,200-seat convention centre in Wellington, which the Council will lease on a long-term basis from the developer at a cost of $4m per year. The aspect of this deal that has unsettled residents and ratepayers is the projection that revenue from the convention centre is only expected to average $2m per year, leaving a $2m shortfall.  The fact that the Council is embarking on this project knowing, ahead of time, that it will be a loss-making venture, provides an obvious reason as to why we haven’t seen private sector investment in this space in the past, and has led some people to question the business acumen of the Council.
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