The system has shown it is capable to attract more tourists and for longer periods of stay and this has led to an increase in the value of takings. Employment figures too have risen over the 2000-2009 period. Unemployed persons have remained steady and the trend for unemployment rates was, until 2008, down. The HPI has shown growth in both the established and project indexes. This seems to suggest that the system is still capable of growth. This puts the system outside of the late K-phase.
The system however is showing signs of a K-phase. The trade deficit is at an all-time high. It has continued to grow as the value of exported goods is dwarfed by the value of imported goods. Even though it appears the costs have surpassed the benefits the trade component of the system continues to function. This is explained by the fact that trade is a very diffuse component. Port Phillip Bay acts as a hub for global trade. The data does not separate out the goods that are imported and exported beyond the focal system. To truly assess the adaptive cycle of Port Phillip Bay trade, more localised data must be acquired.
Further to this the HPI shows that whilst house prices have grown generally, they have been unmatched by the projected prices for those under construction. Projected prices are the future values that homes will generate. In system terms this is the capital that will be acquired in the future. Growth can be achieved on the current components of the system but is finding it hard to accumulate value out of new ones. This is indicative of the K-phase.
The red zones on each graph represent the 2007 global economic crisis. This was a global event that originated beyond the focal system and beyond Australia itself. Yet it appears to have had some impact on a more local level.
Tourism income was trended down along with the occupancy rate in the years following, yet the total number of guest nights and number of arrivals increased over the same period. We can deduce that Port Phillip Bay was still able to attract tourists, in that way the crisis did not affect the system, yet did reduce their spending power.
Surprisingly the numbers of employed people rose immediately after the disturbance and continued into 2009. It appears that Port Phillip Bay was able to absorb the disturbance and adapt in order to continue to find employment opportunities. This is not always the case as economic crisis often leads to major jobs losses (Park, 2009; Soriano, 2009). Therefore we can collude from this that the Port Phillip Bay economic system is at least part resilient.
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