About the Queensland Economy

Queensland’s modern, vibrant economy worth around $350 billion is supported by a range of industries, including a diverse services sector. Over the past two decades, Queensland’s economic growth has generally exceeded the national average thanks to trends such as stronger population growth, a resources investment boom and associated upturn in LNG exports.

A diversified economy

The 2019-20 State Budget forecast Queensland’s economy to grow by 2¾% in 2018-19, and strengthen to 3% in 2019-20. This follows economic growth of 3.5% in 2017-18, the strongest since 2011-12.

Following the strongest growth in a decade in 2017-18, employment growth in Queensland returned to more a sustainable rate of 1.5% in 2018-19, and is forecast to grow by a further 1¼% in 2019-20.

The State recently welcomed the five millionth Queenslander and our population is increasing at one of the fastest rates in the country. At the same time, the State is experiencing rapid change as technological innovations continue to transform our lives.

Mining activity made up 11.8% ($38.8 billion) of our economy in 2017-18 (latest available). Queensland’s coal and bauxite reserves are among the largest in the world and are of high grade making them a sought-after product overseas. Overseas exports of coal, LNG and minerals accounted for around 83% of the nominal value of Queensland’s overseas merchandise exports in 2018-19.

After mining, the largest contribution to the Queensland economy in 2017-18 was from the construction industry, accounting for $29.0 billion (or 8.8%). The construction sector is also the State’s third largest employer, employing 236,100 workers in 2018-19.

Tourism contributed $12.3 billion to the Queensland economy in 2017-18, while the education and training sector contributed $17.0 billion (5.2% of total output) to Queensland’s economy in 2017‑18. Our tourism market is the second largest in Australia, accounting for 23.3% of national tourism output and directly employing 151,100 persons in 2017-18.

Queensland also has strength in the financial and professional services sectors. Combined, these sectors accounted for $42.0 billion of the Queensland economy in 2017-18 and employed 235,300 people in 2018-19. These sectors are growing rapidly having benefitted from a rise in demand across a range of industries as well as households.

The largest employer in the state is the Health sector, with 350,700 people recorded as working in the industry in 2018-19. The Health sector (which also includes social assistance) has been one of the major contributors to the Queensland economy over the last decade, growing by approximately 67% in real terms. As our population ages and the demand for health services increases, job opportunities in this sector are expected to increase.

Last updated: 28 August 2019