This month’s NAB Economics Data Insights report, released today, shows the depth of the economic crisis facing Melbourne’s once-thriving central business district (CBD).
The data shows that the share of Melbourne’s spending on cafés, restaurants and takeaway spent in the CBD has almost halved in the last twelve months.
Melbourne’s CBD café, restaurant and takeaway spending remains 50 per cent down on where they were a year ago while spending in pubs is down 57 per cent.
This is mainly because of ongoing restrictions on office capacity, which remains at 25 per cent for non-public service employees until 11 January next year.
For the public service, all employees are still required to work from home until 11 January, when offices will return to 25 per cent capacity.
Overall, spending growth in Victoria last week was still outstripped by New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory.
Comments attributable to Shadow Treasurer, Louise Staley:
“These latest figures show the level of the crisis facing small retail and hospitality businesses in Melbourne’s CBD.
“Spending on food and drink in Melbourne’s CBD is at half of what it was only a year ago. Cafés, restaurants, pubs and takeaways are all suffering.
“These businesses were forced to shut as a result of the second wave caused by Labor’s bungled hotel quarantine program and inadequate contact tracing.
“Now, their path to recovery is being blocked by restrictions keeping office workers and public servants working from home.
“These businesses need a plan to get people back into the CBD so they can recover.
“Only the Liberal Nationals have a plan to get people Back to Work and Back in Business.”