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'Laser' focus on productivity needed: RBA

AAP logoAAP 22/09/2016 Garry Shilson-Josling, Economist

Australia needs a "laser-like focus " on boosting productivity growth if it's to restore reasonable growth in real incomes, Reserve Bank governor Philip Lowe says.

A period of strong national income growth per person from the early 1990s to 2007 was the result of a combination of strong productivity growth, a fall in the proportion of children in the population, and booming export prices, he told a parliamentary committee on Thursday.

"We're not going to go back to having the growth in real per capita incomes of three per cent a year, because of (changing) demographics and we're not going to get another big increase in the terms of trade, but we can go back to having very respectable growth in real per capita incomes through productivity growth."

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