Originally written by BILL MELDRUM
PROPERTY guru Terry Ryder has predicted Portland’s residential market will be a shining light in the long-term on the back of the Federal Government’s proposed carbon tax.
Mr Ryder will be the guest speaker at a lunch function hosted by the Committee for Portland on Friday.
He listed Portland in his National Top 10 Boom Town Hotspots in Australia in 2009, but yesterday said he was in the process of updating his Portland file and was more enthusiastic about the city’s prospects than he was in 2009, despite not listing it as a hotspot for the past two years.
“The Carbon Tax will have a negative impact on Alcoa and its aluminium smelter, however, looking at the package as a whole, I think Portland will benefit from the package because it is right in the middle of the renewable energy sector,” he said.
“The government has a (proposed) $10-billion package to assist renewable energy and the Portland area has wind farms, wave energy, geothermal, gas, and also has a company that manufactures the towers for wind farms.”
Mr Ryder said he also expected property growth to be fuelled by woodchips and mineral sands.
He said that when looking at long-term prospects for a market, the hiccups in between had to be ignored.
“I am aware the woodchip sector is going through a tough time at the moment, especially with its major market in Japan suffering from the recent tsunami and an economic downturn,” he said.
“However, I have been speaking with the Port of Portland chief executive officer Jim Cooper who says new markets for woodchips are being explored in China and India.
“If those two markets open for the region, then jut based on their size you would have to say the future for woodchips is rosy.”
He also said mineral sands because of the catchment area involved had huge benefits for Portland.
“Portland is the beneficiary of mineral sand mining as far way as the north of Ceduna, and that is a very large catchment area,” he said.
“I am upbeat about the potential of the regions in Australia as property hotspots.
“The metropolitan media tends to look at the nation’s property market as being capital-city based and that market has been sluggish, if not going backwards in recent times.
Mr Ryder said state governments were also starting to be more focussed on regional development, and noted that incentives such as stamp duty concessions would fuel growth.
“Affordability is a major issue when it comes to property, and while capital cities have problems when it comes to affordability, the regional cities such as Portland are highly affordable when it comes to the property market,” he said.
Mr Ryder said he has three decades of experience as a journalist, author and researcher specialising in residential property.
He is a columnist for The Australian newspaper, writing on Hotspotting issues every week, and is the owner and creator of hotspotting.com.au, which provides information to property investors on how to identify emerging markets before they’re common knowledge.