Tasmania's post-COVID economic growth spurt appears to be spluttering out, with new economic figures showing the economy expanded by just 1.1 per cent in the last financial year, down from 4.3 per cent the year before.
Premier Jeremy Rockliff said the Australian Bureau of Statistics figures showed Tasmania grew despite inflation, interest rate rises and other factors pushing against economic expansion.
"Tasmania was a leader of the economic recovery out of COVID-19 and has managed to grow again despite the strong national headwinds," he said.
"Our government knows that employment opportunities are crucial to combat these headwinds.
"We now have 53,000 more Tasmanians in jobs than when we took office and will continue to back the aspirational job-creating projects Tasmania needs."
Opposition treasury spokesman Shane Broad said the latest figures continued a trend of recent months of slowing growth and falling employment in the state.
He seized on the comparatively low figure of 1.1 per cent to criticise the government's economic credentials.
"Tasmania's Gross State Product (GSP) rose only 1.1 per cent in the 22-23 financial year, below the national average of 3 per cent," Dr Broad said.
"This is far below the government's projection of 3.75 per cent in the 2022-2023 budget and even further behind last year's growth of 4.3 per cent."
The Tasmanian economy is disproportionately suffering compared to other states' economies, he said, and blamed it on "mismanagement" by the Rockliff government.
"Michael Ferguson's excuse that rising interest rates are the cause of this economic slowdown is not credible when Tasmania's growth is much slower than the other states who are impacted by the same factors.
"Since Jeremy Rockliff took over as Minister for State Development, the state has slid further backwards."
Mr Ferguson disputed the claim that the state's economic output was below government projections.
"The fact is, Tasmania began our post-COVID economic recovery sooner than other states, and our current economic indicators are in line with Treasury projections, which forecast a normalisation from a period of high growth," Mr Ferguson said.
"The triple threat of inflation, rising interest rates and a slowdown in the national economy is causing uncertainty and threatening both business and consumer confidence."
Recent surveys show consumer sentiment across the country has plummeted since the Melbourne Cup day interest rate hike, with consumers increasingly turning to cheaper brands and cutting expenses across the board.
The ABS' results for the past few quarters suggested that Tasmania has moved into a technical recession - defined as two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth.
Inflation combined with interest rate hikes and geopolitical tension driving up fuel prices is hitting the pockets of average Tasmanian families.
Those households with a mortgage now pay about $14,000 per year more in repayments than they did when the Reserve Bank began raising rates in May 2022.
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