Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP report card

uses existing 2019 data




Very good (0.85-1.00)

Good (0.65-0.84)

Satisfactory (0.5-0.64)

Poor (0.25-0.49)

Very Poor (0.00-0.24)

No Grade.png

No data available


The Economic component was last assessed in 2019 and had an overall score of 0.72 (B) between 2015 and 2019 the score has ranged between 0.72 in 2015 and 2018 and 0.75 in 2016. As the scores for this indicator have shown little variation over this 5-year period from 2019 the Economic component will now be monitored every 3-years with the next round of monitoring due to occur for the 2022 report card. The 2019 report card scores for the Economic component are used in the 2021 report card.

The scores for each of the three economic indicator groups ranged from satisfactory to very good in the 2019 report card. This grade was calculated from the economic performance, economic stimulus and economic value (recreation) indicator groups. Of those indicator groups, economic performance received the highest score of 0.90 (A), economic value (recreation) received a score of 0.76 (B) and economic stimulus received a score of 0.58 (C).

Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP
Economic Performance Results
Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP
Economic Stimulus Results
Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP
Economic Value Results



The economic performance indicator group consisted of three indicators based on key industries using the harbour, shipping, tourism and commercial fishing.



Data on monthly shipping movements were provided by the Gladstone Ports Corporation. The score for shipping activity was based on a capacity utilisation (current level of activity relative to potential level of activity) estimate. To determine the score, data for the 2018–19 financial year were compared to a 10-year baseline dataset from 2009.



The score for tourism was based on expenditure on hotel accommodation, food and other local services relative to a 10-year average from 2008 to 2018 in the Gladstone region. Since 2017 the tourism indicator has been supplemented by expenditure made by passengers and crew members of cruise ships docked at Gladstone Port.


Commercial fishing

The score for commercial fishing was based on fishing effort and the value of the landed catch in three fishery sectors: the net (fish), pot (mud crab) and otter trawl (prawns) relative to a 10-year average starting from 2008–09. The line fishing measure was excluded from 2018 owing to considerable data gaps over the past 10 years and the very small size of this fishery. Fishing production data collected from the Gladstone area (Grid S30) was used as the primary data source for the commercial fishing indicator. The total value of commercial fishing was estimated based on catch data by fishing method derived from the QFish database and the average prices for each species group (fish, prawns and crabs) derived from the most recent Australian fisheries and aquaculture statistics report. The three fisheries sector scores were weighted by their relative contribution to Gross Value Production.


The economic stimulus indicator group consisted of two indicators: employment and socio-economic status.

The score for employment measures the unemployment rate for the Gladstone Local Government Area compared to unemployment rates in all Queensland Local Government Areas. This comparison used the most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics data available, which was for the 2019 March quarter.

The score for socio-economic status was derived using the Index of Economic Resources (IER). The IER was calculated using Australian census data and refined using data from a Computer-Assisted Telephone Interview (CATI) survey of 439 Gladstone residents conducted in June 2019.


The economic value (recreation) indicator group was assessed through four indicators, land-based recreation, recreational fishing, beach recreation and water-based recreation (non-fishing). The score for this indicator is based on the mean satisfaction rating by those who undertook the activity and the economic value of the recreational trips.

Information on the non-market economic value (recreation) of the harbour area activities was collected through a community survey of 439 people within the Gladstone region via a CATI survey. Data on travel costs, travel time, and other access and site costs were used to calculate the economic value of using a recreational site based on the investment that people have made in the activity. In 2014 the economic value of land-based ($61 per trip) and beach-based recreational trip ($40 per trip) were estimated. Additional information was collected in 2015 and 2017 to estimate the value of a recreational fishing trip ($141) and water-based recreation ($95). The per trip recreational values will be updated once every five years.

Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP


The overall economic performance score of 0.90 was strongly influenced by the high score for shipping activity (0.90) and tourism (0.90). While the score for commercial fishing (0.36) was lower, it did not impact the overall score owing to the weighting system employed.


The shipping indicator score of 0.90 was identical to the score recorded in the two previous years. Coal exports are the dominant shipping activity and increased over the reporting months while LNG exports remained relatively stable during 2018–19. There was a slight decline in alumina exports. Total ship movements in and out of the harbour were similar to 2018 with a monthly average of 153 vessels.


The tourism score was 0.90 (A), the same score as 2018 and 2017. Expenditure on tourism (accommodation, food and other local services) in the Gladstone region was $308 million in 2017-18.

Commercial fishing

The commercial fishing indicator remained poor (0.36, D), similar to the score of 0.35 recorded in 2018 and 2017 and down from its highest score of 0.60 in 2014. The calculated Gross Value of Production (GVP) in Gladstone has been declining since 2014. The GVP for Gladstone Harbour fisheries for 2018-19 was $0.99 million.


Despite the decline in productivity, commercial fishing in the Gladstone region remains relatively strong when compared with neighbouring regions. In 2018–19 the 10-year mean GVP from Gladstone was $3.17 million compared with $1.28 million for Rockhampton/Yeppoon and $1.86 million in the Mackay region. 


Economic performance assesses the performance of three key industries based in Gladstone.

Shipping activity provides a proxy for economic activity in key exports such as coal and gas, as well as the imports and exports associated with harbour-based industries such as mineral processing. The high score for shipping activity confirms that these export-focused industries are generating a major economic stimulus to the local economy. Tourism and fishing remain important sectors for the harbour-based city of Gladstone.

The commercial fishing indicator score remains low. However, this result must be interpreted cautiously as there have been some missing data in the QFish database that have affected data for both the current and previous years. Additionally, the measure for line fishing was removed in 2018 as it contained multiple data gaps and was a very small fishery. However, the low grade is largely driven by lower activity in the net and trawl sectors.

Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP


The score for economic stimulus of 0.58 (C) was aggregated from the scores of two indicators, employment 0.44 (D) and socio-economic status 0.64 (C). Both scores were identical to the 2018 scores.

The unemployment rate of 7.3% for the 2019 March quarter was lower than the previous year’s rate of 8% but higher than the state average of 6%. This indicates that over the past 12 months the relative position of Gladstone improved slightly compared to other LGAs in Queensland.

Since the release of the pilot report card in 2014 the socioeconomic status score has declined from a high in 2014 of 0.90 to 0.64 observed in both 2020 and 2018.

Overall, the lower scores reported for socio-economic status reflect the impact of job losses and increased unemployment in the Gladstone region. However, the identical scores observed in the past two years may suggest that this trend is stabilising.


Economic stimulus captures the potential stimulus from economic activities that may flow through to the community. That the unemployment rate is above that observed in other LGAs suggests that the economic stimulus from harbour-based industries on the local economy and job creation is lower than it has been in the past. The lower unemployment rate observed in 2019 suggests that this might be improving.

Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership GHHP


The overall indicator group score for economic value (recreation) was 0.76 (B) similar to the score of 0.74 recorded in the previous year and the scores for all indicators were similar to last year. Land based recreation was 0.77, recreational fishing 0.71, beach recreation and water-based recreation were both 0.76.

The most popular land-based activities were walking, picnicking or barbecuing and relaxing by the water along the shores of Gladstone Harbour. The most popular beach visited by the survey participants was Tannum Sands followed by Spinnaker Park and Boyne Island. Land-based and beach recreational activities were much more prevalent than recreational fishing and other water-based recreation.

The highest average annual economic value of $49 million was reported for land-based recreation followed by $44.5 million for beach recreation, $26.6 million for recreational fishing and $21.6 million for water-based recreation. Overall, the economic value estimates for 2019 were higher than the 2018 values.

The land-based recreation trip value decreased by about $2 million this year compared to 2018. However, the average satisfaction rating increased from 8.26 (2018) to 8.40 in 2019. As a result, the score changed from 0.76 (2018) to 0.77 (2019).

The recreational fishing trip value decreased from $31.2 million in 2018 to $26.6 million in 2019. However, the average satisfaction rating for recreational fishing trips increased from 7.36 in 2018 to 7.70 in 2018 resulting in a slightly higher score for 2019.

The beach recreation trip value increased by $9.5 million in 2019 and the average satisfaction of respondents remained similar to the previous year (from 8.22 in 2018 to 8.23 in 2019). The value of water-based recreation in 2019 was $21.6 million dollars a $1.4 million increase on the previous year and the average satisfaction rating for trips increased from 8.13 to 8.29.


Economic value (recreation) assesses community enjoyment from the harbour through recreational activities. The economic contribution of harbour-based recreation can be assessed by how much of that wealth is spent on recreational activities in the harbour.

The results indicate that land-based recreation was the most important recreational activity followed by beach recreation and recreational fishing based on average annual values of recreational trips for 2019.This pattern was same as observed in 2018 and 2017.