VIC Building Approvals Most Valuable in Nation

The Victorian treasurer has welcomed new research which found that the state had the largest number of building approvals in the country in 2012.

In addition, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data revealed that residential and non-residential real estate construction approvals in Victoria had the greatest worth.

Given that the value of approvals topped $24 billion – a 7.4 per cent jump on 2011 – treasurer Kim Wells said that it highlights how important the residential construction industry is to the state.

He explained: "It is a significant achievement that Victoria, with only a quarter of the nation's population, accounts for a third of the number of buildings approved and 30 per cent of the value of work being undertaken across the country."

However, Mr Wells said an inquiry needs to take place as a result of increasing costs in the construction sector and added that the Gillard government has walked away from its commitment to examine why costs are rising.

The Victorian government is continuing to support the residential building industry by introducing a 30 per cent reduction in stamp duty for eligible first time property buyers.

Last year, the worth of residential building approvals reached $15.3 billion.