|Small Business Areas of Focus |
CCIQ supports fiscal repair of the government budget to bring it back to surplus.
CCIQ supports the reduction in net foreign debt obligations.
- Governments around the world with high debt levels are using a larger portion of tax revenues to service existing debt.
- Debt reduction is the key to ensure existing and future obligations are met and to fund public infrastructure projects.
CCIQ supports prudent financial management as the key to meeting infrastructure targets for a growing population, investment into education and maintaining world class public services.
Australia has low net government debt compared with the United Kingdom and the United States. However, bond issuance has increased at its fastest pace in the last decade than at any time since federation. Low debt in the absence of meaningful reform can accelerate debt ‘piles’ in a short time span.
Australia is a commodity-based economy and it is incumbent to maintain a low debt profile as a safeguard to respond to external shocks.
Consolidating a low debt position will bolster the nation financial and sovereign risk profile and allow the nation to continue to attract capital inflows to promote stability of the currency and facilitate the current account deficit.
CCIQ supports the reduction of bracket creep.
CCIQ supports maintaining superannuation contributions at 9.5%.
Government revenues are being boosted by taxes on workers who have moved into a higher-tax paying bracket.
Where a larger percentage of take-home pay is taxed ‘Bracket creep’ can perversely hurt workers and discourages labour force participation.
Businesses have endured two consecutive award wages rises above 3% and those in Queensland, in particular, are not in the position to absorb any further increase to the superannuation guarantee.
Maintain superannuation contribution payments at 9.5% and resist moves to 12% for employers. A review of the retirement system in Australia would require would conclude that small businesses have little capacity left upon which to pay higher contributions in this regard.
Harmonise Corporate Tax Rate to 25%
CCIQ supports a corporate tax rate of 25% for all businesses.
CCIQ supports bringing forward tax rates to begin in 2020/21
- Queensland is home to 450,000 small business with many already operating on thin margins and Australia has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the OECD.
- Accelerate the reduced company tax rate from 10 years to 5 years for businesses with a turnover of up to $50 million.
- Consideration of the tax rate in the context of tax reform needs to refocus toward raising a greater portion of tax from consumption rather than income.
Workforce Skills and Training
CCIQ supports the removal of levies for skill shortages and migration program.
CCIQ supports full funding on national-state agreements on training, apprenticeships and certifications.
CCIQ supports the standardisation of training programs, to streamline a suite of confusing licenses across states and regions.
- Review proposed changes to migration visas, such as Skilling Australian Fund (which proposes an upfront levy for small businesses to employed skilled workers. The levy is excessive and will not deliver desired outcomes. In addition, the review of the Skilled Occupation List has cut niche industries and therefore has serious and unintended consequences for small businesses, particularly in regional Queensland).
- Full funding model for a National Partnership Agreement focused on apprenticeships, enabling all governments to work together to deliver a national apprenticeship system that meets the needs of industry, young people, and workers wanting to change industries.
- Ensure employers, particularly those in regional areas, can continue accessing skilled workers through the new temporary skilled migration visa where skilled labour shortages occur.
|Infrastructure Investment|| |
- Accelerate the roll out of ‘City Deals’ across the country, particularly for regional cities in Queensland who are experiencing challenges in the transition post resources boom.
- Fast track the release of available funding under the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) Fund through an improved project assessment process.
|Energy Pricing || |
- Undertake regulation reform to streamline processes and avoid duplication, inconsistencies and competing agendas.
- Harmonise energy and climate policy across Australia that puts downward pressure on energy prices.
- Sustainably increase gas development to ensure domestic users have access to affordable gas supply.
- Introduce tax deductions for investments in energy assets for small businesses (solar panels, batteries, smart meters, demand management technology).
- Commit to a meaningful, consistent and durable energy policy platform that will stimulate investment, put downward pressure on prices and provide price relief to small businesses.
|SME Growth and Innovation|
- Streamline tourist visas to further boost Australia’s tourism industry, with funding from the Government directed at providing greater support for the regional areas of Queensland.
- Encourage competition in Government-owned services to improve efficiencies and lower costs.
- Extend the ‘Accelerated Depreciation for Small Business’ scheme beyond 30 June 2020 to reinvigorate small business capital investment.
- Increase the number of places available under the New Enterprise Incentive Scheme (NEIS), which will assist young entrepreneurs in starting up a small business.
- Procurement programs that actively target greater small business participation in servicing government.