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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 18431

Government appoints Small Business Commissioner

Photo of Gillard, Julia

Gillard, Julia

Period of Service: 24/06/2010 to 27/06/2013

More information about Gillard, Julia on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 14/03/2012

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 18431

Australia's 2.7 million small businesses will be given a direct voice to the Gillard Government, through the appointment today of the nation's first Small Business Commissioner.

Labor understands how vital the small business sector is to the Australian economy, employing almost 5 million Australians and making up over a third of the economy.

The small business sector has been calling for better advocacy, advice and information at the federal level and the Government has listened.

This new Commissioner will:

* Provide small businesses with a new voice to highlight their issues to the Australian Government;
* Provide a one stop shop for small business services and information;
* And ensure the interests of small business remain at the forefront of Government policy making.

Australia's more than two million small businesses are made up of hard-working men and women who are putting in long hours to build better futures for their families.

The Commissioner will also act as a one stop shop for small business people, representing their concerns and interests directly to the Government.

Small business owners will be able to access information and advice, and referral to external services such as dispute resolution services.

The Commissioner will also work with the Minister for Small Business, Brendan O'Connor, to ensure Government agencies take into account the needs of small businesses, including ways in which we can manage the regulatory burden on small business.

The Commissioner will report directly to the Minister, who will liaise directly with his Cabinet colleagues about issues important to small businesses.

The Commissioner will also be able to take up individual cases with relevant Government agencies.

The Commissioner's office will work with state and territory small business commissioners to ensure services for small business are simple and easy to access, minimising duplication across jurisdictions.

They will also work to simplify advice for small business, including in dispute resolution, making it more readily available online and via hotline.

Labor has always taken the needs of small business seriously. We appointed the first ever Small Business Minister, and made this portfolio a Cabinet appointment earlier this month.

This announcement responds to the Australian Government's review of small business dispute resolution programs and options which reported in 2011.

Labor understands and supports the aspirations of working people who want to run a decent small business. That is why we are also cutting the company tax rate for small business from 30 per cent to 29 per cent, increasing the small business instant tax write-off from $1,000 to $6,500 and introducing a $5,000 tax break for motor vehicles - all of which are opposed by the Liberals.

The Commissioner will be appointed in the second half of this year.

Transcript 18431