Matt means business

By JOSEPH TERNOWETSKY

WHILE the rest of Australia's economy may be slowing, Rockhampton's booming industry shows no sign of stopping.

Economists have predicted the impact of rising fuel prices and dampened consumer spending would slow Australia's economy this year.

But Rockhampton industry authorities have said these issues will not apply to Rockhampton.

"Rockhampton is coming into its own simply because the mining industry is no five-minute wonder and it shows no sign of slowing,'' Margaret Goody from Rockhampton Regional Development said.

"Where we are geographically placed is a big help.'' And while the coal boom may be one of the leading factors in Rockhampton's prosperity, she said other industry in the area was also doing well.

"The beef industry is doing well too,'' she said.

"They are getting good prices.'' Another sign of a strong economy is job advertisements and she said the number of listed job vacancies in the newspaper had doubled in the past 12 months.

New businesses are also sprouting up all around Rockhampton. Matt Baldwin opened a coffee shop in Stocklands Shopping Centre last week and said Rockhampton was an ideal place to start a business.

"We looked at a few different places,'' he said.

"And decided Rockhampton had the best growth opportunity.''

Tourism is also expected to expand in the region due to new interest in the outback.

"People are looking at going to regional areas during vacations,'' said Alan Chamberlain general manager for Capricorn Tourism.

"We are very well positioned for this.



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