As Australian operators prepare for the year ahead, IBISWorld unveils its annual list of the top five industries set to soar in 2013, and the five expected to sink.
Industries to fly
1. Oil and gas production
Forecast to grow by 15.9% to reach $44.4 billion in 2013, the oil and gas production industry has been highlighted by IBISWorld as this year’s top industry performer, with growth driven by higher output and substantially higher global prices.
Australia’s liquefied natural gas production and exports are expected to increase significantly over the coming year. This reflects a switch in favour of gas for electricity generation, which will be driven by more volatile demand and carbon pricing on oil, and an expected increase of 8.4% in US dollar crude oil prices.
With abundant reserves in Queensland and New South Wales, LNG output is rapidly growing and is expected to reach 6.8 billion cubic metres in 2013. Most of this production is expected to come from Queensland, where coal seam methane is already used in electricity generation, and where a number of export-oriented LNG plants are currently under construction.
Strong growth in export demand for LNG is expected to increase world prices by 15.7% over the next year.
2. Organic farming
Organic farming has grown at a compound annual rate of 10% since 2008, and is expected to continue to rise as consumers factor in the health benefits and environmental impact of their food choices. IBISWorld forecasts an increase of 12.5% across the industry over the coming year, boosting revenue to $617 million.
Consumers are becoming increasingly eco and health conscious. This means they are more willing to pay a premium price to prevent environmental degradation caused by conventional farming methods and to ensure the products they consume are free from added chemicals and hormones. Major retailers, such as Coles and Woolworths, continue to respond to this trend, increasing the convenience in which these foods are purchased.
Income growth – forecast to rise 3.4% over the coming year – will be a key factor driving demand for organic products. As Australian incomes rise, we are seeing consumers move away from conventionally farmed produce towards natural, chemical- and hormone-free counterparts.
3. Online education
IBISWorld anticipates revenue for Australia’s online education industry to increase by 10.5% in 2013, to reach just under $5.6 billion. Growth has been supported by the continued uptake of high-speed internet services, growing acceptance of online education, government support for students and efforts to expand access beyond the typical school-leaver demographic.
We are seeing an increase in demand for convenient education, particularly among working adults who wish to gain new skills and qualifications, but are too time poor to attend classes full-time or in person. The NSW Department of Education is also assisting industry growth, with technologies expanding at a rapid rate to deliver education to remote parts of Australia.
4. Online shopping
Forecast to grow by 9.1% to reach almost $11.8 billion in 2013, the online shopping industry has continued to flourish as consumers demand more of their goods and services via the online realm.
Australians are increasingly expecting traditional retailers to have an active investment in the online sphere, and to provide options for online browsing and shopping to complement their storefronts.
Over the coming year, IBISWorld expects online retailers to move into the bricks-and-mortar space, providing convenient pick-up and return locations for consumers. This phenomenon will lead to a greater increase in the convenience provided by online retail.
5. Multi-unit apartment and townhouse construction
Strong population growth in the late 2000s has fuelled underlying demand for housing, in particularly for the multi-unit apartment and townhouse construction industry, which is forecast to grow 9% over the coming year to reach $16.6 billion.
IBISWorld is seeing an urban shift towards medium to high density residential developments as occupants opt to remain close to the CBD, transport and commercial hubs.
Property investors – primarily funded from Asia – kick-started new apartment projects in 2010 and 2011. This, coupled with several interest rate cuts since November 2011 and the flow through of government assistance to both homebuyers and investors, is projected to have a buoyant effect on the industry.
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