Business

Manufacturing geared for positive 2018

Australia's manufacturing sector appears set for an uptick in 2018, a new survey shows. (AAP)

A new survey points to a largely upbeat manufacturing sector heading into 2018, buoyed by increased public and private investment.

Manufacturing looks set to enter 2018 in a positive mood, buoyed by the growing momentum of the economy more broadly and the lift in world economic growth.

But Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry head James Pearson is concerned about the flat spot of consumer spending.

He is encouraged by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's commitment to delivering personal income tax cuts as well as sticking to lowering the corporate tax rate for all businesses.

"It will put money in people's pockets, encouraging consumer spending," Mr Pearson told reporters in Canberra on Tuesday.

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry-Westpac industrial trends survey for the December quarter showed continued solid output and new orders in the manufacturing sector, while employment and overtime expanding.

The survey's composite index showed only a moderate fall to 63.4 from 66.1 after a solid rebound from 55.1 in June 2016, which coincided with the federal election.

"The robust level of December's results reflect the boost from increased investment in both state infrastructure projects as well as private non-mining construction," Westpac senior economist Andrew Hanlan said.

"A relatively low Australian dollar and global growth are also supporting exporters."

The survey's labour market composite index also pointed to continued solid jobs growth in the near term.

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