The 2017 Regional Price Index (RPI) is the eighth index released by the State Government. The first was produced in 1998.
The RPI provides an insight into differences in the costs of goods and services for regional consumers. In 2017, this was achieved by comparing the price of a basket of more than 600 goods and services across 27 regional locations, to prices for the same items in the Perth metropolitan area. The Perth prices are based at 100, with indexes over 100 indicating higher costs than Perth, and indexes under 100 indicating costs lower compared to Perth.
The Government has made significant investments to reduce the cost of living in regional areas, and in particular to normalise the cost of living in the Pilbara and Kimberley regions. For the first time, the Kimberley region's index was higher than the Pilbara region's index. Prices in these regions continue to show normalisation of prices, with the 2017 indexes for the Kimberley and the Pilbara at 112.9 and 110.7 respectively. The Gascoyne region was not far behind with an overall index of 109.1. Prices in the remaining regions were all generally comparable to Perth prices.
The RPI is a key component used by the Department of Commerce to calculate District Allowance rates. The RPI is also used by government and industry for a range of pricing decisions, including the setting of regional taxi fares, and private sector wage negotiations for remote locations.
All data sets relating to Research and Direction Setting are hosted on www.data.wa.gov.au. If you have any further enquiries, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.