News | 8 September 2016

Wellington open for business, outlook looking good

Wellington City Council’s 2016 Open for Business Survey, released today, shows the business community’s confidence in the Capital City’s economy continues to grow.

Acting Mayor Justin Lester says: “Wellington City Council wants to provide an environment where Wellington business can flourish. The 2016 survey is the third conducted since 2013 and ensures Council is on track to do this.”

“It’s good to see that business sentiment is positive and is trending up. I’m also pleased to see that perceptions of working with the Council have continued to improve, though we always look for ways we can improve,” Cr Lester says.

Wellington City Council commissioned Nielson to carry out the survey of Wellington businesses to provide insight and an ongoing measure into what it’s like to conduct business in Wellington.

The Chair of the Council’s Economic Growth and Arts Committee, Councillor Jo Coughlan, says the surveys are important. “I’m very pleased with the latest results – they confirm what we’ve all experienced over the past year – that Wellington is doing very nicely indeed.

“'Open for business' means providing an environment where business can flourish – supporting businesses, growing them, and attracting new ones to the city are critical. If we do this well, we will see business growth, more economic activity, more quality jobs, more students staying in the city after their studies, and ultimately more money in the city to deliver high quality services.”

The results provide an understanding of the benefits and disadvantages of having a business based in the capital and what Wellington City Council can do to enhance Wellington as a great place to do business.

Wellington CBD is a compact and vibrant city with growing potential. The survey shows expectations for the Wellington economy have improved noticeably – 55% of businesses think there will be an improvement in the Wellington City economy over the next 12 months compared to 45% in 2014 and 42% in 2013.

There are different challenges emerging for Wellington businesses arising from a stronger economy – including finding suitable premises and traffic and parking concerns. In 2014 businesses were much more likely to be concerned with the size of the Wellington economy than they are today.

First Retail Group Managing Director, Chris Wilkinson says: “The fact there is pressure around resources in the CBD is a good problem to have, it shows the economy is growing and more businesses want to stay here and be part of Wellington’s success.”

Perceptions of Wellington City Council as being business-friendly have also improved. This includes consents and licensing processes – from 49% satisfied in 2014 to 56% in 2016.

Open for Business - 2016 Survey of Wellington Businesses (892KB PDF)