Gas to become Australian economic growth driver

The gas sector has been touted as one of five of Australia’s next great drivers of economic growth, soon to leave the mining industry lagging behind.

The revelation comes from Deloitte’s paper ‘Positioning for prosperity? Catching the next wave’, which looks at the future of Australia’s growth.

Mining will remain a firm driver of the economy, but the paper suggests that in terms of growth it will be overtaken by other sectors that will further lift Australia’s trajectory for growth, namely the gas sector, as well as agribusiness, tourism, international education and wealth management.

The “fantastic five” have been pegged to potentially add $250 billion to Australia’s economy over the next 20 years, having the potential to match mining, which makes up 10per cent of the economy.

National LNG output is expected to increase by 250 per cent before 2018.

A spokesperson for Deloitte said that if Australia can meet this goal, it might surpass Qatar as the world’s leading LNG producer.

Currently there is $200 billion worth of gas projects under construction, and another $180 billion worth is under consideration, which could create an additional 150,000 jobs and $5 billion in annual tax revenue.

Despite predictions for falls in commodities prices, Deloitte said the size of the mining sector with ensure it is central to the Australian economy for many years, although currently there is an industry need to overcome regulatory and tax system challenges.

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