Small business needs to remain a big deal following departmental reshuffle

05 Dec 2019 |

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry urges the Government to keep its eyes on the needs of small business, while welcoming the re-organisation of government departments announced today.

“People in business welcome the Prime Minister’s aim to bust bureaucratic congestion, improve decision-making and deliver better services,” ACCI CEO James Pearson said.

“Cross-portfolio collaboration should be a key metric for Government policy design and development and we hope this reshuffle of Department responsibilities will see policy areas work more closely together.

“Small business is a big deal. We hope small businesses, the engine room of the economy that make up 98% of all businesses,  are not overlooked in the new mega Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources.

“The Small Business name has gone from the departmental titles, so it is more important than ever that the small business portfolio maintains cabinet-level representation, currently through the Hon. Senator Michaelia Cash.

“We look forward to working with the new Industry, Science, Energy & Resources Department secretary David Fredericks, and his portfolio ministers, to ensure small business is given the priority it deserves.

Mr Pearson said the decision to unite and locate long and short term drought solutions in the Prime Minister’s Department “makes sense”.

“We encourage the Coalition to consider such consolidation and coordination in other areas where practical initiatives can make a world of difference. An Australian Regulatory Agency, with responsibility to work across Government and with industry to remove red tape, is a prime example.

“The decision to link Energy to Resources and Industry also makes sense. Energy is a critical input for businesses and families and an issue on which ACCI has campaigned for lower costs and greater reliability. Government will be able to address, in an integrated way, the whole of the energy supply chain, from exploration, development and production through transmission and delivery to consumption.

“We are also pleased that the skills and employment portfolios remain bound together, because we have already witnessed significant strategic improvements and real outcomes as a result of the pairing.

“The Prime Minister is right to recognise that infrastructure and communications are closely linked. ACCI has long argued that people and businesses in regional Australia need to be better connected to opportunities and markets both domestically and globally.

“Finally, we acknowledge the contribution, over many years, of the outgoing departmental secretaries. They continue a tradition of public service of which all Australians can be proud.”

Marie Hogg

Senior Adviser - Media

P  |  0431 299 518

E  |  [email protected]

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