Presidents Comments

Well here we are again on the doorstep of Christmas and New Year, said Mr Ron Hay, President of the Whyalla Chamber of Commerce and it has been a year of continual challenges.

We are witnessing changes in employment levels at local, state and national levels, the lower value of the Australian dollar, which has a positive effect on exports and a negative one on imports. However, said Mr Hay, even though these situations exist, I believe Whyalla still has a reasonably good economic base to support our community.

Recent media commentary at a national level, anticipated an expected spend in the retail sector of billions of dollars across the nation and of course, as we move closer to the Christmas period, there is an expectation that our retailers locally, will benefit from the Christmas period and the relative expenditure that will go with this.

As consumers face that anxious moment of ‘what to buy’ it is time to reinforce the value of ‘face to face’ service, backup and support from our local retail outlets and the staff within them, said Mr Hay. Although shopping habits and methods have changed dramatically over the last few years, the Chamber executive members firmly believe that you cannot substitute an alternative for the personal touch.

As we draw closer to Christmas, I would also encourage consumers to make certain that they have considered a number of factors when shopping for that special gift. For example, if ordering an item, take into consideration that this period creates a number of external influences due to higher demands on freight carriers and warehouse processing of orders, which may delay supply, said Mr Hay.

By shopping locally, you can discuss these potential issues directly with retailers, thus alleviating the possibility of your item not arriving in time. This is something you may not be able to do when you buy over the internet.

Mr Hay said, it is important to make certain that we support our local retail industry and hence maintain our own economy and employment levels within it, a thought I will leave with our consumers, coming up to one of the biggest purchasing times of the year.

The Whyalla Chamber looks forward to being able to gain feedback from its membership on the outcomes from the retail spending during this Christmas period, anticipating a positive position for all.

In closing said Mr Hay, I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Chamber Executive and the membership, to wish our sponsors and the Whyalla community a safe and happy Festive Season and a prosperous New Year. See you all in 2015.

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