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In my American modelling days, Southern Models here in South Australia was the importer for Life Like Proto 1000 & 2000 range of locos, etc.
One such Heritage 0-8-0 tender loco which was sold for USA$225 would have cost me around A$375 plus postage if I imported from the States but local shops who was getting them from Southern Models & selling them for under A$200. In asking about this, the story was the Souithern Models imported them direct from China, not via the USA distributor.

Like others in Australia, some Hornby locos can be cheaper locally & others from say Hattons.

Now Bachmann in Australia is a different story all together - in most cases locos here are at about 50% dearer than if we import them from Hattons, etc including postage.

Loyalty to local hobby shops can only be stretched so far.
 
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