Strong business confidence among metropolitan based businesses during the first quarter of 2018 masks wide variations in trading performance and sentiment across different industries and locations according to the latest Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Business Trends and Prospects Survey.
The March quarter survey found that more than 40% of business owners in Melbourne expect business conditions to improve over the next twelve months. However, in regional Victoria, only 28% are as confident.
Similarly, while a significant 41% of businesses in the tourism and recreational services sector reported an increase in sales over the March quarter, those in the transport and storage sector experienced much tougher conditions due to increasing congestion and rising energy costs.
Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Mark Stone AM said the forthcoming Victorian Budget needs to spur business confidence and improve the operating environment.
Mr Stone said the Victorian Chamber’s State Budget submission includes recommendations to tackle business challenges and keep Victoria strong and growing, including:
Victoria accounts for a quarter of Australia’s economic output, with 590,000 private sector businesses employing nearly 2.5 million people or 78% of the State’s workforce.
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