SOUTH EAST QUEENSLAND UPDATE – MAY 2019

Like Western Australia, Queensland was also seen as a potential key to the election outcome with several marginal seats. This again led to significant commitments by both major parties. Whilst roads and rail again featured heavily, there was also expenditure aimed at other keys items. Some of the key commitments made by the Coalition include:

  • $75m for the Townsville Port Channel widening;
  • $40m Bruce Highway extension to Cairns Airport;
  • $100m Townsville Water Security Burdekin Pipeline;
  • $280m for the Mackay Port Access Road;
  • An $800m investment in the Rockhampton Ring Road;
  • $100m Gladstone Port Access Road;
  • $207m towards the Gold Coast Light Rail project;
  • $500m on upgrading several rural and regional Roads;
  • $60m on Brisbane’s Linkfield Road Overpass;
  • $176m for the Rookwood Weir irrigation scheme; and
  • $85m upgrade of Lindum rail crossing.

Ongoing weakness in the housing market has seen a slight decline in lot sales volumes in 2019. SEQ sales volumes fell from 741 sales per month in Q4 2018 to 685 sales per month in Q1 2019. Traditionally, a decline in lot sales volumes would lead to weaker land prices, however this does not appear to be the case in SEQ currently. The median lot price and median lot size have remained steady in Q1 2019, and both are up slightly on the previous 12 months (5.8% and 3% respectively). This indicates the pricing is competitive and should be well-positioned to take advantage of any increase in demand. There remains an expectation of improving market conditions on the back of ongoing population growth. (Source: Research4)

Many of the above infrastructure projects are either aimed at or complimentary to key drivers of population and employment growth such as tourism, mining and other exports. SEQ has traditionally benefitted from strong interstate migration, which is directly related to growth in employment opportunities. Employment growth for the 12 months to March 2019 was 39,100 or 1.6%. Seasonally adjusted unemployment fell from 6.1% in March 2019 to 5.9% in April 2019. (Source: ABS)

See important disclaimers.