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Australia’s IT spending plateau

Australia’s IT spending plateau

Gartner predicts worldwide spending will fall six per cent but Asia-Pacific is one of the better performing regions

Worldwide IT growth may look bleak, but Australia will endure.

Analyst firm, Gartner, predicts that global IT spending is on course to plunge six per cent, down from $US3.4 trillion in 2008 to $3.2 trillion this year. All four major IT segments will cop a beating with computing hardware the biggest loser, estimated to fall by 16.3 per cent.

Comparatively, Asia-Pacific is fairing well as it is set to experience a 5.2 per cent growth decline. Spending is tipped to hit $US489 billion, down from 2008’s $US516 billion. Software is expected to buck the trend and be the only segment to have positive growth in Asia-Pacific.

Gartner managing vice-president, Ian Bertram, said there were pockets of resilience in the region which improved the results, but the figures had been dragged down by the hardest hit countries such as Korea in Singapore.

Delayed expenditure in Australia has resulted in pent-up demand. While the Government is splashing cash in certain IT areas such as infrastructure, the commercial sector is more hesitant. This dampens the country’s growth potential.

“Overall, spending is flat year-on-year. It is not growing but not declining by much,” Bertram, said.

He also attributed the positive software outlook to crucial business applications such as customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) tools.

“People continue to spend and re-evaluate models around their business applications because that inherently reflects their own business and its processes,” he said. “If they don’t have those operations running smoothly, they need to invest in that.”

North America is on track to be the least affected region, enduring only two per cent predicted growth decline. Europe will suffer the worst: Spending is likely to plummet by 12 or 13 per cent.


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