New Zealand’s biggest contractors are the most likely to be licensed in Australia, and they’re also among the most expensive, according to new research.
Key points:New Zealand contractors have a higher proportion of contracts awarded in the first half of this year than their Australian counterpartsNew contractors have the highest number of contracts in the second half, according the dataThe top ten contractors have been awarded more than $6bnNew contractors are less likely to receive a contract for less than a yearNew contractors’ contracts have increased by nearly 40 per cent over the past yearNew Zealand’s most expensive contracts are in Auckland, followed by Wellington, Wellington West, Christchurch and Christchurch North-WestThe findings from the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ contract research showed that the top ten contracts awarded to New Zealand companies in the year to May were worth $6.8bn, compared with $4.9bn for Australian firms.
In the first six months of this financial year, there were nearly $1.5bn of contracts and subcontracts awarded in New Zealand, up 42 per cent from the same period last year.
The next-highest number of awards in New England was $3.1bn, followed closely by the South Island ($2.6bn) and the Northern Territory ($2bn).
The highest number awarded in Queensland was $2.5b, followed in the North Island by $1bn and the South West by $900,000.
New Zealand was ranked seventh in the world for the proportion of its total contracts awarded awarded in less than two years.
The survey also found that contractors in New York City, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth were the most popular in terms of how they received their contracts.
In a bid to improve public confidence in the system, New Zealand contracted in the biggest number of subcontracts since 2012, with more than 6,000 contracts awarded.
Contractors in Australia have been among the biggest beneficiaries of a tightening labour market, with their contracts increasing by nearly 39 per cent between the first and second halves of the year, according a report by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
“Contractors are increasingly using subcontracts to increase their profits,” the ACCC’s chief economist, John Grant, said.
“The new business model that is developing in New South Wales and Queensland is not in keeping with the standards set out in the Australian Code of Practice.”
New Zealand has the second-highest proportion of subcontracting firms in the industry, after Hong Kong, with almost two-thirds of contracts worth more than a dollar awarded in that country.
New South Wales was home to the largest number of contractors, with 2,854, followed behind by Victoria and New South England with 1,838.
The top 10 most lucrative contracts in New Zeland were awarded in Auckland ($2,564m), Christchurch ($1,923m), Wellington ($1.837m), Dunedin ($1 million) and Christiaan Gippsland ($1m).
Other top five contracts awarded were in the Pacific Islands ($1bn), South Africa ($1 billion), New Caledonia ($944k) and Japan ($800k).
New Zealand contractor turnover has also increased by more than 40 per in the past two years, with an average of $4,500 per month.
The ACCC also released its latest figures on the number of people working in Newzealand, the largest Australian jurisdiction, which showed that New Zealand was the most productive in terms (job creation) of all the states and territories in the country.