Retail survey backs up push for residents to shop locally

A SURVEY showing food and clothing is cheaper in Gladstone than in Brisbane or Rockhampton backs up a chamber of commerce push to get people shopping locally.

The latest index of retail prices published by the Queensland Government statisticians' office showed people in Gladstone paid 5.9% less for food and non-alcoholic drinks than people in Brisbane, and 6.8% less for clothing and footwear.

Clothing in Rockhampton was only 2.6% cheaper than Brisbane, and food was 7% higher.

However, the cost of living in Gladstone was 8% higher overall than in Brisbane, largely due to house prices.

Gladstone Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Rick Hansen said it was interesting to note that in some retail areas, goods were a lot cheaper in Gladstone than they were elsewhere.

"The perception here is that everything is more expensive than the big city, and overall the figures are saying that, but a lot of people go outside town to buy clothes because they think they're getting it cheaper," he said.

"This shows we're way cheaper than Rocky so the perception of that is surprising."

He said it was important to make people aware Gladstone's retail shops can provide clothing cheaper than other areas, but food prices didn't surprise him.

"I still think the independent supermarkets are getting more and more competitive, and they're diversifying more," he said.

Gladstone Regional Council reported that since workforces on the major projects had passed their peak in numbers, house prices were beginning to ease and wages were becoming more sustainable.



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