SHOPPING TROLLEYS around Australia are beginning to fill up with Easter goodies this week, according to the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), with under two weeks until the Easter holiday period kicks off.
Unlike Christmas, shopping for Easter generally takes place in a shorter period of time, with the bulk of Easter related purchases taking place in the fortnight prior to Good Friday.
ARA Executive Director, Russell Zimmerman, said that despite supermarkets who begin to push the sale of chocolate eggs and hot cross buns from New Year, the majority of sales do not occur until much closer to Easter.
“Spending on gifts and entertaining for Easter really begins to ramp up from now on, with a peak in Easter-related spending expected in the five days prior, from March 20 to 24,” said Mr Zimmerman.
“Hot selling items will of course be chocolate and sweets, hot cross buns, and seafood, and we’ll also see a general spike in sales of food and beverages as consumers make purchases for Easter celebrations with family and friends.
“As stores are unable to trade by law on Good Friday and Easter Sunday, shoppers will be stocking up on all the necessities to tide them over for those days when they aren’t able to get to the shops.”
Ferguson Plarre Bakehouses estimates around 150 million hot cross buns will be consumed by Australians this Easter, while chocolate sales are expected to exceed $200 million.
Fish markets and co-ops will also be preparing for crowds in the days before Good Friday, with many Australians upholding the tradition of giving up meat for the day. Sydney Fish Markets predicts around 55,000 people will walk through its doors on Good Friday, and more than 400 tonnes of seafood will be sold throughout the weekend at the markets, including more than 44 tonnes of prawns.
“Easter is a key sales period for retailers, particularly those in the business of food and groceries, however, stores in other areas are also able to pick up additional sales with targeted offers relevant to Easter.
“We’ve seen innovative retailers grow sales each with the addition of limited edition Easter lines, or non-traditional products, such as chocolate hot cross buns.”
About the Australian Retailers Association:
Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the retail industry’s peak representative body representing Australia’s more than $300 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. The ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 5,000 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.
TOWNSVILLE Enterprise believes the Federal and State Governments need to take more decisive action on job creation in the wake of the mining downturn and the impact on business and confidence caused by job losses at QNI.
Townsville Enterprise Chair Kevin Gill said the region has faced uncertainty for too long.
“Fast, decisive action by the Federal and State Governments, acting in a coordinated way, is needed now,” Mr Gill said.
“Townsville Enterprise, the Chamber of Commerce and Regional Councils have presented projects that with an injection of Government funds, or more supportive policy settings, can have a direct impact on employment, build confidence and set the foundation for long term economic growth.
“These projects are not new and Governments are well aware of their benefits to the region as job generators.
“The wheels are starting to turn with a clear recognition from Governments that the region is hurting, but it’s vital that the speed dial for action is turned right up.
“If the Governments are serious about the Northern Australia Development Agenda, they will act now to keep jobs in the region and to retain workers that we are at a real risk of losing, by providing targeted funding for key priorities. It just makes good economic sense to keep people employed in the region rather than needing to attract a workforce back to Townsville North Queensland in the future.”
Townsville Enterprise outlined projects that Governments could support right now.
- Announce an immediate boost to funding for the Integrated Stadium and Entertainment Centre ($100m already committed to a $380m project)
- Expedite the mining lease for the Adani Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail project to start activity in the Galilee Basin
- Fast track the Ergon/Energex merger and relocation to Townsville
- Boost edutourism funding to take advantage of the development of a new export opportunity
- Support the development of PNG and Auckland flights to boost tourism, trade and commerce
- Fund the business case for the Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor
- Match funding with the State Government to complete the $380m Integrated Stadium and Entertainment Centre
- Base the headquarters of the $5billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility in Townsville – the business centre of Northern Australia.
- Fund road and rail projects to improve supply chains for agribusiness, cattle and mining industries.
- Announce that the Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia will be headquartered in TownsvilleAward funding from the $25m National Water Infrastructure Fund to Townsville Enterprise for feasibility studies into raising the Burdekin Dam and the new dam at Hells Gate.
“We acknowledge the efforts of the State Government through the Accelerated Works Program and today’s announcement of the $25M commitment to the Mount Isa to Townsville upgrade.
"We also acknowledge the Federal Government’s commitment of an additional $1.9m to the Structural Adjustment Program, however, these efforts need to be turbocharged if they are going to make a real difference,” Mr Gill said.
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As the inquiry into the role of transport connectivity on stimulating development and economic activity moves to Melbourne on Friday, a key focus will be on how investments in transport assets could be offset by the increase in property value along transport corridors.
Chair of the House of Representatives Infrastructure, Transport and Cities Committee, Mr John Alexander MP, emphasised that transport connectivity was not an end in itself—it was a means of achieving urban renewal and regional development.
“Transport connectivity makes our cities more liveable and our regions more accessible, while also increasing the value of the property along transport corridors and adjacent to transport assets, such as rail and bus stations,” Mr Alexander said.
"Value Capture is about using some of that increased value to pay for the infrastructure that created it, with even modest gains in property value potentially creating a significant funding base. This could be utilised to build transport infrastructure projects from small light rail services to interstate high speed rail connectivity.”
In its submission, the international consulting firm ARUP highlighted the importance of integrated land-use and transport planning. It noted that value capture is predicated on relatively high property prices and the potential for property value uplift. Likewise access to new infrastructure adds value to property appeal and hence property prices.
Date: Friday, 11 March 2016
Time: 9:00 am–4:00 pm
- Strategic Intelligence Group (Submission 30)
- ARUP (Submission 42)
- Peri Urban Group of Rural Councils (Submission 58)
- Committee for Geelong (Submission 32)
- Hon Tim Fischer AC (Submission 52)
- Mr Peter Knight (Submission 48)
- City of Port Phillip (Submission 29)
- City of Melbourne (Submission 62)
Venue: Committee Room G.6, Parliamentary Annex, 55 St Andrews Place, South Melbourne, Parliament of Victoria
The public hearing will be webcast live at http://www.aph.gov.au/live