Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

Why it's important

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is New Zealand’s official measure of economic growth, calculating the value added from all economic activity. Production of goods and services nationally is measured against purchases and exports of goods and services (with deductions for imports), to derive the final figure.

Key points

  • Gross Domestic Product (GDP) remains at a high level in Christchurch and Canterbury, and continues to grow, albeit at a modest rate compared to recent highs.
  • Estimates from Infometrics indicate that economic output in Christchurch grew by 2% in the year to December 2018, reaching $21.3 billion. Canterbury grew by 2.3%, reaching $31.3 billion. The national economy is strong, growing 2.7% over the same period.

Note this is an interactive chart and you can select the legend items to change what is shown on the graph.


For the year to December 2018, the value of economic output in Christchurch represents 8.6% of New Zealand GDP, down slightly from the year to December 2017. Output from Canterbury overall reached 12.7% of national output, unchanged from the previous year.

The preceding period of strong growth (2012-2015) was largely due to the rebuild. Construction activity has now tapered off. Economic activity remains at a high level, but growth rates continue to slow.

Note: This information is adapted from the Christchurch and Canterbury Economic Report (December 2018 quarter). Reproduced with permission.

Data notes

The national accounts record all types of transactions. They do so for the economy as a whole and for certain groups or sectors within it. This provides information on economic activities such as:

  • the production of goods and services and the costs involved in producing them;
  • the incomes earned by various groups within the economy, and what they do with them;
  • the economic relationship with the rest of the world.

The main outputs are:

  • Gross Domestic Product (GDP) – the measure of the value added from all economic activity in New Zealand.
  • Real gross national disposable income – the net income of New Zealand residents from both domestic and overseas sources after taking into account income redistribution by way of international transfers, or gross national income plus net international transfers. The real gross national disposable income statistics are published with the quarterly GDP information release.
  • Government sector statistics – a measure of the financial performance of central and local government operations. 

Data information and downloads

Data Source

Household Labour Force Survey, Statistics New Zealand. Tailored data for ChristchurchNZ

Data Access

Report freely available, tables on request

Date Updated

Quarterly (to Dec 2018)

Data Table Download

Download tables [XLSX, 30 KB]

Page Updated

[XLSX, 30 KB]May 2019

Data breakdowns

Geographic  Area

Christchurch, Canterbury and New Zealand

Other download variables


Links to other information and reports