Economic growth expected from health, education

EDUCATION and health are ranked among the top industries expected to lead economic growth in Maryborough and Hervey Bay in coming years, according to Fraser Coast Opportunities report.

University of Southern Queensland (USQ) Vice-Chancellor Professor Jan Thomas welcomed the report that showed the region’s $3.2 billion economy was in transition and education and health would lead growth into the future.

The Fraser Coast Opportunities report shows health, education, professional services, construction and tourism will lead growth in employment, output and value adding.

Professor Thomas said that at the forum on November 5, Fraser Coast Mayor Gerard O’Connell talked about the region’s changing face and future demand for health and education.

“There are some good indications of this change happening already with applications from school leavers to study in 2015 at USQ Fraser Coast up 34 per cent on this time last year,” Professor Thomas said.

“This means an increasing number of local students are seeing the benefits of studying locally and choosing to stay in this region.

“USQ Fraser Coast’s discipline areas of highest interest include education and nursing, followed by applications in counselling and business programs.”

FCO report on economic growth also showed:

  •  The Fraser Coast population will grow 33 per cent to 145,000 people by 2036, adding  about 47,000 additional residents in the next 20 years;
  •  Growth will occur in all demographic segments, led by couples with children, couples with no children and lone person households;
  •  The changing face of the Fraser Coast will require 20,000 additional dwellings over 20 years to meet demand;
  • Housing stock can be predicted based on the household type and geographic distribution of the Fraser Coast’s detailed demographic forecasts;
  • The changing face of the Fraser Coast will continue to lift demand for infrastructure and services required to meet health (early years, family medical, allied health and aged care), education (all levels and industry focused), and professional services – boosting investment and overall employment.
 Photo: An additional 47,000 residents who are expected to call the Fraser Coast home by 2036 will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the region’s natural attractions such as whale watching. 
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