At $79 billion, if Australia's digital economy was an industry it would be bigger than retail or agriculture

If Australia’s digital economy was an industry it would be bigger than the nation’s agriculture or retail sectors, a new report, released by Deloitte and commissioned by Google Australia, has found.

The report estimates Australia’s digital economy will contribute $79 billion or 5.1% of gross domestic product this year.

With the growth of cloud tech, the adoption of smartphones and heightened connectivity, the research forecast it would be an industry which would endure rapid growth, reaching $139 billion or 7.3% of GDP by 2020.

The AFR reported Google Australia boss Maile Carnegie said she couldn’t think of another part of the economy which has grown at the same rate since 2011 when Deloitte Access Economics conducted its first Connected Continent report and found Australia’s digital sector was worth about $50 billion.

“It is hard to estimate exactly the future growth, but whether it is $130 million or $150 million by 2020, is almost not the point. It is absolutely the thoroughbred that, as a country we should be jumping on and riding as hard as we can,” she said.

At the time it expected the digital economy to hit $70 billion by 2016. The figure released today, which was well ahead of that estimate, was the result of the adoption of tech like big data analytics and the cloud.

In a blog post today Carnegie said: “The digitally-enabled economy is on fire.”

“It’s a powerful engine that is driving growth and productivity gains in all sectors in Australia. Now, we have to make sure we don’t take our foot off the accelerator, because the best is yet to come.”

There’s more here.

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