The Riverina-Murray region includes the Murray, Riverina and Murrumbidgee areas and is one of Australia's main food producing regions. Its reputation as the 'food bowl' of NSW is complemented by a strong manufacturing
industry and thriving visitor economy.
The region borders the ACT in the east and Victoria in the south and covers 26 local government areas. The region's major centres of Wagga Wagga, Albury and Griffith account for just under 60% of the region's output (27%, 21% and 10% respectively).
Agriculture is a major economic driver in the region, generating 34% of the gross value of all the crops in NSW, 20% of the gross value of livestock slaughtering and 27% of the gross value of livestock products. The region's strength in primary production is leveraged through downstream supply chains in food processing and distribution.
With agribusiness identified as a sector with major growth potential, driven by strong demand from Asia ('the dining boom'), the region is well placed to capitalise on recent trade agreements with Japan and Korea, which includes lower tariffs for beef exports.
Quality infrastructure in the region supports the agricultural sector. The Blowering Dam in Tumut and the Burrinjuck Dam in nearby Yass Valley (South East and Tablelands) provide a water storage capacity of over 2.6 million megalitres (more than five times Sydney
Harbour). This water storage supplies water to irrigation areas such as the Murrumbidgee and Coleambally (covering 128,000 ha). In response to water scarcity and climate change, the region is adapting through the use of more efficient irrigation technologies.
The Riverina-Murray is well serviced by transport infrastructure, with extensive road and rail links and airports at Wagga Wagga, Albury, Griffith and Narrandera. The airport at nearby Mildura (in Victoria) helps service the west of the region. These facilities provide easy access to major consumer markets and provide a variety of channels for export import.
The Murray Darling Basin Economic Diversification Fund will continue to promote economic diversity in the region by providing new infrastructure, facilitating increased production capacity, improving access to markets and building regional resilience.
In 2013, the Riverina-Murray region contributed $13.6 billion to Gross Regional Product (GRP), representing around 10% of Regional NSW's total GRP ($137.7 billion).
Download the Riverina-Murray Economic Profile