Retailers in Australia enjoy the 11th most attractive location in the world in which to operate, benefiting from a strong business environment and ease of operating, says Arcadis in its Retail Operation Index.
The index ranks 50 international markets according to the five key factors that retailers look to when choosing where to locate their stores: these include infrastructure quality, consumer demand and ease of establishing a business in the first instance.
Overall, the mature Asian markets offer retailers the best conditions, with Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan occupying three of the top five positions, places that reflect their burgeoning middle class and governmental willingness to encourage foreign investment. Furthermore, in environments such as these retailers are able to turn around struggling sales with greater ease, creating a more stable base for investment.
Australia received the overall ranking of 11th as a result of strong market demand and factors such as business environment and ease of operating, while a comparatively poor economic environment ranking held it back overall. In addition, Australia was ranked in the top 20 locations for the quality of overall infrastructure and placed fifth for ease of doing business.
Anthony Venturini is Sector Managing Director at Hyder Consulting, part of the Arcadis Group. He says Australia is seen as a target destination, predominantly due to the strong market demand, good business environment and our logistics performance.
“We are also seeing more foreign investment in Australia with favourable exchange rates and the comparative ease of operating in this region,” he said.
Elsewhere, the UK and US perform strongly, providing retailers with a favourable regulatory environment and strong economic climate, despite their ageing infrastructure, which has the potential to impact future prospects. Meanwhile, of the Eurozone nations, only Germany and the Netherlands feature in the top 10. It appears that ongoing uncertainty over the Euro may be continuing to impact retailers’ operations right across the continent and could potentially dissuade investment in the longer term.