HEJ255 News Unit: Piece One

Business confidence is unexpectedly positive on the North-West Coast, according to a statewide survey released today.

The Tasmanian Survey of Business Expectations shows positive business confidence.

Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry CEO Michael Bailey said the North-West result is pleasing.

“We’ve been surprised to see the North West coast remain pretty resilient because it has been hit in the last few years by the most significant changes,” he said. “We expected to

“We expected to see a larger impact on business confidence in the North West, but we’re seeing a very resilient market.”

He cited the fall in the dairy price, problems in the poppy industry and redundancies at Caterpillar as some of the major hits to employment in the region.

The survey was released just hours after dairy conglomerate Murray Goulburn announced the closure of their processing plant in Edith Creek.

The shutdown of the plant will result in the loss of 120 jobs directly, with predictions other businesses in the area will be impacted.

Mr Bailey said it will be difficult for employees to find other work.

“It’s very hard for a region such as Smithton to really counter the sorts of job losses that are being predicted as a result of the closure of this plant.”

“We know it’s a terrific area for growing dairy cows and producing milk so there must be some opportunity there, but at least in the short term, it will be very difficult.”

Image Credit: The Mercury Newspaper

This is one of a series of five pieces written for assessment for HEJ255: News Contemporary Practice and Analysis. This interview was also used for radio copy for ABC News Hobart hourly bulletins.

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