A newly released report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has found that the proportion of business owners in regional areas is substantially higher than in Australian capital cities.
The ABS report found that in 2009-10 there were approximately one in every seven Australians receiving income from running their own unincorporated business, but the percentage in some regional areas was much higher, with almost one in five income earners outside the capital cities being business owners.
"We found that Darling Downs – Maranoa, a rural region in south-eastern Queensland, had the highest proportion of business owners, with almost a third (32 per cent) of income earners there receiving income from an unincorporated business,” ABS Director of Rural and Regional Statistics Lisa Conolly said. "This was closely followed by Western Australia's Wheat Belt, where 31 per cent of income earners were business owners.”
The report found that the three main industries that business owners worked in were: construction; agriculture, forestry, and fishing; and professional, scientific and technical services.
“For some of these people, running their own business is a second job or a way to supplement other income, but for others their business is the main source of income,” Conolly said. “Our latest Census data shows that about 850,000 Australians run a business as their main job. The majority of these business owners were males (66 per cent) and tended to be older than the general working population, with a median age of 47 years, compared to 40 for the average worker.”
Follow @mybusinessau on Twitter for breaking stories throughout the day.