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Media Release by The Hon Tanya Pibersek MP

Government Welcomes State of Supply Report 2010

Federal Minister for Housing, Tanya Plibersek, has welcomed the release of the National Housing Supply Council’s State of Supply Report 2010.

The Council was set up in May 2008 by the Rudd Government to analyse the adequacy of housing and land supply and to help plan for and meet future housing needs for the nation.

“I would like to thank Chair Owen Donald and the other council members for their hard work and dedication in compiling the report,” Ms Plibersek said.

“The information in this report will contribute to effective policy development in the area of housing, including affordability and land supply, capital city strategic planning and population policy, which will benefit all Australians.”

The report found that demand for housing is set to increase with the total number of Australian households projected to grow by 3.2 million over the next 20 years, with growth concentrated in and around major cities including Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Brisbane.

The report also shows that the number of Australian households has increased by 200,000 since 2008, with the gap between demand and supply increasing from a revised figure of 99,500 dwellings at June 2008 to 178,400 at June 2009.

The report also found that greenfield development started in 2009 will generally take between six and 15 years to come to market and that some jurisdictions are performing better than others.

Ms Plibersek said ongoing issues with land supply and difficulty in accessing finance for development during the global recession had impacted on the number of new houses being built in 2008/09.

“Today’s numbers again confirm the supply gap in Australia, which has been growing for a decade and while the impact of the GFC should ease over time, other systemic issues won’t go away without significant reform,” Ms Plibersek said.

“State and Territory governments, local councils, and industry must adopt a more strategic approach to residential developments to meet the evolving needs of an increasing and ageing population. That’s why the Prime Minister and the Treasurer have put planning reform firmly on the COAG agenda.”

The reporting period for this report – the 2008/09 financial year – covers the worst part of the global financial crisis. Since then, the First Home Owners Boost and $5.6 billion Social Housing Stimulus have had a considerable impact on housing starts.

The Government’s $512 million Housing Affordability Fund is also lowering the cost of new homes by reducing planning delays and lowering infrastructure changes on new developments.

The Rudd Government is increasing the stock of social and affordable rental housing by 80,000 units through the Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan and the National Rental Affordability Scheme.

To register to obtain a hard copy of the National Housing Supply Council’s State of Supply Report 2010, please email nhsc@fahcsia.gov.au.