Deloitte: 25 ways to kickstart South Australia’s future toward a $134 billion economy by 2027
29 November 2017: A bigger and more liveable Adelaide, regions taking advantage of their natural assets and competitive advantages, and new bodies driving investment and infrastructure development and delivery, have the potential to deliver significant economic growth, and a strong future for South Australia.
With this focus, South Australia could be home to 2 million people and a thriving $134 billion economy by 2027, according to Deloitte’s final report in the Shaping Future Cities Make it Adelaide series – Make it a plan Adelaide – and its 25-point action plan.
Deloitte kicked off the conversation earlier this year when, informed by thinking of Deloitte Access Economics, it identified eight industries where we have a competitive advantage, private sector investment and population growth as keys to South Australia’s future.
Deloitte South Australia Managing Partner, Andrew Culley, said: “Back in May, we launched what has become a robust and very positive conversation around what a future South Australia can look like.
“Since then, and with the ongoing backing from the likes of the Committee for Adelaide, Business SA, Adelaide City Council, the Property Council of Australia and guidance from key leaders on our Steering Committee, we’ve consulted with more than 500 business, government and community sector representatives, as well as individual South Australians, and they have contributed on so many fronts.”
The consultations revealed five key drivers the state needs to get right to support the transition:
- Infrastructure (physical and digital) – vital to connecting Adelaide, the regions and the rest of Australia and the world
- Liveability – a key advantage that needs to be retained alongside sustainable population growth
- Risk taking – there’s a need to overcome a traditionally conservative attitude towards risk and investment
- Workforce – retaining, developing and attracting the best and brightest is critical, as is preparing for the future
- Perception – negative self-perception is self-defeating.
“But doing will always speak louder than just talking, and we always intended that these conversations would help to drive action on multiple fronts,” Culley said.
“We all want the same thing – a big future for our city and state, and one where we truly embrace the future, play a significant role in Australia’s economic and cultural life, and take a well-earned place on the global stage.
“We want a young couple to choose Adelaide as a great place to build careers and start a family. We want to change the mind of a businessperson in Sydney or Singapore choosing where to invest. We want migrants around the world considering South Australia as a place to transform their lives.”
Make it a plan Adelaide highlights include:
- A South Australian population of two million by 2027 (an extra 277,000 people, or around 13,000 each year above baseline forecasts)
- An inner Adelaide where the tram network extends north, south, east and west, providing the transit backbone for new urban villages
- Transformed industries – health and biomedical industries invigorating Adelaide’s west end, growing universities and creative industries underpinning a revitalised North Terrace, and businesses making the most of supply opportunities in the defence, agribusiness and resources sectors
- An expanded Adelaide Airport and Central Market, and redeveloped Riverbank
- Outer suburbs better connected to jobs through extended rail corridors and appropriate road investment
- Two new bodies to drive investment and infrastructure development – a South Australian Investment Corporation and an independent Building South Australia to drive and prioritise infrastructure programs
- Regional communities making the most of mineral, gas and renewable energy resources through growing private sector capital investment.
Deloitte Access Economics Director, Aaron Hill, said: “The way to create a strong and sustainable future will be to play to our strengths in the quest for population and economic growth, while being careful not to lose sight of the things we know are so good about Adelaide and our state.
“Fundamentally, we need to build a robust industrial base that takes advantage of the sectors where global growth is strong and aligns our comparative advantages as a state, and we need to attract and retain more people with the right skills.
“We’ve carefully modelled what the economy of a bigger Adelaide might look like. We describe where and how people might live. And we’ve mapped out how this might transform our city.
“By concentrating population growth to the CBD and key urban villages, and modestly increasing density along new transit corridors, most parts of Adelaide won’t see much change from a growing population.
“And while government policy settings and initiatives are important, we believe that delivering this stronger future can be driven by the private sector.”
Culley said: “We’re confident about South Australia’s future, but it’s not guaranteed. A sustainable future needs to be built on action. It needs to be earned, and doing nothing can’t be an option.
“We can secure a future where more people choose Adelaide and South Australia as places to live, work and invest.
“But to do this, we need to link a plan for population growth to investing in the acceleration of industries where we have a natural advantages and that will allow us to compete for talent and investment, both nationally and globally.
“With the support of our partners, government, business and communities, executing the 25 actions we are proposing in the right way – as challenging as some of them will be – can transform Adelaide and South Australia into places where people want to live, work and invest.”