THERE'S more to boom and busts than major projects, while a chamber of commerce study has seen clear divides between the survivors and those who will soon be out of business.

The construction industry is not faring well, with many in the retail and professional industries also looking at reducing their workforce over the next 12 months.

But one LNG proponent says Gladstone needs to move away from the idea it needs a major project to survive, and begin to help itself as well as seek support.

The Gladstone Chamber of Commerce and Industry began the Boom or Bust study with financial support from LNG proponent ConocoPhillips after being constantly asked what the situation was, when speculation ranged from businesses having the most profitable period ever, to others struggling to survive and some going out of business.

GCCI member Crystal McGregor said a lot of long-term, small and micro businesses responded, which enabled them to get down to the "nitty-gritty".

GCCI committee and business menbers, from left, Carl Carter, Crystal McGregor, Karen Porter, CherieTopfler, Lyndal Hansen, Julie Robinson, Rick Hansen, Peter Coskerry, Rob Gibb and front Alicia Williams, Renate Edwards and Naomi Edwards.
GCCI committee and business menbers, from left, Carl Carter, Crystal McGregor, Karen Porter, CherieTopfler, Lyndal Hansen, Julie Robinson, Rick Hansen, Peter Coskerry, Rob Gibb and front Alicia Williams, Renate Edwards and Naomi Edwards. Mike Richards

She said that included 6% of businesses predicting to close down in the next 12 months, and 20% looking to reduce their workforce.

"The chamber is starting to talk to these businesses to see if we can make them sustainable into the future," she said. "20% of the construction industry is looking to close down, so that's huge for the Gladstone region when you're looking at small business in construction."

Ms McGregor said a further breakdown by sector showed 19% in retail and 25% of professional and technical services would reduce its workforce.

APLNG community relations manager Rob Gibb said APLNG wanted to support business sustainability in the region.

"From a boom and bust perspective I think we need to try and move away from the perception in business... that Gladstone needs a major project to survive," he said.

"It is about resilience and sustainability in the end and how businesses position themselves to take themselves forward.

Financial outlook

WHAT is your financial outlook over the next 12 months?

  • 17.4% indicated BETTER
  • 45.5% indicated SAME
  • 37.1% indicated WORSE

- Boom or Bust study

Sundays

  • 48% not operating on a Sunday by choice
  • 86% said it was family and rest time

- Boom or Bust study



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