When in town today I took notice of a couple of things:
1) I drove past about 7 shops in the main shopping centre that were empty or for lease
2) 10 in the port area were for lease and one was having a closing down sale
3) the sewing hobby shop is closing down (backs onto the railway line)
4) about 1/3 of the factories/warehouses are empty. Businesses are moving to different premises as the savings in rent pays for the move inside 6 months.
If the economy is so strong how come the town has the most empty business premises in over 20 years (in both real and percentage terms).
Also as there is no IT award people are being paid the minimum wage and only given casual work. There is a turnover of barista's and other hospitality/retail staff as it's all casual at minimum possible rates.
housing prices in neighbouring towns are dropping as the factories, tourism and rural suppliers are closing. As the population dwindles the shop keepers find it harder to make ends meet so put off staff who leave town to find work so there are fewer people to buy things at the shops....
these are not indications of a strong economy