SAUL ESLAKE

Economist

SAUL ESLAKE

‘Welcome to my website …
I’m an independent economist, speaker, company director
and Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of Tasmania’

Tasmania’s three Ps a logical place to start


News, Tasmania | 19th October 2016

Sean Ford | The Advocate | 19th October 2016

Preview of the Tasmania Report 2016, published in the Burnie (North-West Coast) Advocate newspaper, 19th October 2016

OPINION: Saul Eslake is on the case: Expect usefulness, SEAN FORD says.

It is heartening to know prominent economist Saul Eslake’s second Tasmania Report on the state economy will be released by mid-December.

His first, commissioned by the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and released in 2015, was a valuable document.

He said during the week he would again focus on population, productivity and participation as drivers of economic growth.

That is a sound approach.

We know population is a major challenge for Tasmania in terms of low population growth.

That equates to ever decreasing size and, frankly, importance relative to Australia as a whole.

The state’s population challenges are gaining a new and worrying dimension because Tasmanians are significantly older, on average, than other Australians, and the gap is widening.

The drain of Baby Boomers from the workforce is biting hard earlier here than in other states.

Productivity is important because productivity growth is the key factor in improving living standards over time.

Tasmania has relatively low productivity levels, partly because of the mix of jobs the state offers compared, particularly, to the big mainland capitals, and partly due to relatively weaker educational attainment, on average.

And participation in the labour market through being either employed or actively looking for work is crucial as a driver of economic growth and as a measure of the strength of an economy.

Tasmania’s participation rate is relatively low.

This year, Mr Eslake will pay significant attention to the effects of the ageing population, and suggest goals for the state based partly on the demographics of other islands.

It is not all doom and gloom, of course.

The tyranny of distance is much less these days, thanks to technology, and Tasmania has great export opportunities in agribusiness, seafood, mining, tourism, high-end manufacturing, services and education.

Also, our politicians recognise the importance of getting education right.

While there have been steps forward and steps backwards, successive governments have been making serious attempts to improve participation in education and outcomes.

There are also growing opportunities to “poach” professionals and creatives from the mainland and overseas – again, partly thanks to technology – and to lure back former Tasmanians.

None of this will just happen.

We need to be the best we can be and get much more right than we get wrong, at business, government and community levels.

We’re not actually the only mob in the world wanting a better future.

Mr Eslake’s report can be expected to lay down some useful markers along that road.

For all his qualities, Mr Eslake can only analyse, advise and make clear the issues and broad opportunities.

It will be up to the rest of us to make the good things happen.

We owe it, especially, to our children, their children and so on.

As TasCOSS chief executive Kym Goodes wrote in last year’s Tasmania Report: “It should no longer be business as usual in Tasmania.”

“TasCOSS wants to see a Tasmania where everyone can participate in the cultural and economic developments currently taking place and not be left behind.”

Worthy goals.

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The Coronavirus Impact Chart Pack will be updated every Saturday afternoon, Australian time, for as long as it remains topical. It will be accessible to subscribers of the Premium Access package.

If and when Covid-19 ceases to be front and centre of attention (as it is now) – whenever that might be – I will continue to prepare a Weekly Chart Pack, but with a focus on whatever replaces the virus as the issue du jour.

ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC
27th February 2021


CORONAVIRUS IMPACT CHART PACK 2021-02-27

"I see a lot of chart packs in my line of work, but yours is about the best I have seen. It is amazingly comprehensive, covering far more of the world than any individual is entitled to cover, the charts are clear and easy to understand and they drill down into each topic in a very satisfying way. So well done, Saul."

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Rufus Black, former Managing Partner of McKinsey’s, and currently Vice-Chancellor of the University of Tasmania


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“An excellent summary. Although I take a great interest in what’s happening with COVID-19 day by day In Australia and Internationally, I always find your weekly summary a very interesting review of the past week.”

retired former Chief Executive Officer of a District Hospital Service in New South Wales


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"I see a lot of chart packs in my line of work, but yours is about the best I have seen. It is amazingly comprehensive, covering far more of the world than any individual is entitled to cover, the charts are clear and easy to understand and they drill down into each topic in a very satisfying way.
So well done, Saul."

Alan Kohler, ABC finance presenter, founder of Eureka Report


“I continue to find you thinking invaluable - this year to my ritual weekend reading of the economist I have happily added ‘Saul’s latest’.”

Rufus Black, former Managing Partner of McKinsey’s, and currently Vice-Chancellor of the University of Tasmania


“Your chart pack is amazing - and thanks for offering to add me to the mailing list, that would be great to be included. Everything you could want to know is there - and the way the data are organised and presented to tell the stories makes it so easy to follow.”

Prof Jeff Borland, Truby Williams Professor of Economics, The University of Melbourne, Website


“An excellent summary. Although I take a great interest in what’s happening with COVID-19 day by day In Australia and Internationally, I always find your weekly summary a very interesting review of the past week.”

retired former Chief Executive Officer of a District Hospital Service in New South Wales


“Just want to congratulate you Saul on the unbelievably good set of slides you just presented, possibly the best I have ever seen. You have set the bar very high.”

Dr Joe Flood, Adjunct Fellow, RMIT University, Pandemicia


“Thank you very much for your excellent presentation for the Economic Society today. It is always a great pleasure to hear your eloquent, up-to-date and comprehensive talks.”

Andrew Trembath, economist, Victorian and Australian Government agencies


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“You are one of the best at what you do in the world”
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Andrew Clark, journalist, Australian Financial Review, November 2008

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