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I realise you are asking about costs and logistics, but I think there are also ethical considerations especially if the furniture you are talking about is wood or wood-framed.

Furniture is a large bulk of wood, and Chinese manufacturers are not known for having sustainable practices at the top of their list. Most Chinese wood comes from destruction of virgin African (especially Congo) forests. By buying wood from non-sustainable manufacturers you are funding the destruction of forests and the habitat of chimpanzees and gorillas.

If you buy from a reputable Australian dealer, you can check if the wood has been sustainably sourced, especially if it has FSC certification.