28 March 2024

Opinion piece: Supporting Australia’s small businesses this Easter


Published on SmartCompany

Small business owners work hard, and the holidays are no exception.

While a lot of people across our country have been looking forward to a relaxing long weekend this Easter, people like Nathan Beer have been putting in the extra hours.

He joined me in Parliament House last month, when we talked about his small business – Choc’d Full – and the increased demand he was already seeing for his products.

Like so many places across the country, Nathan’s local community in Canberra uses opportunities like Easter to show their support for small business.

It was great to chat with Nathan about our government’s support for small businesses like his right across the country. We have having already committed hundreds of millions of dollars in targeted support to help small businesses thrive.

We’re putting in more than $60 million into helping small businesses online.

This isn’t just about helping them be successful in the digital age – it’s also about protecting small businesses.

The Digital Solutions program, the Cyber Wardens Program, the Small Business Cyber Resilience Service and the cyber health‑check will all provide small businesses with opportunities to be smarter and safer online.

We’re also working to improve payment times to small businesses, with more than $8 million for initiatives. This includes increasing pressure on big businesses to improve payment times by highlighting the best and worst‑paying performers.

We’re providing practical support immediately through targeted energy bill relief of up to $650 for around 1 million small businesses in partnership with states and territories, as well as supporting small businesses in their energy transition with the Small Business Energy Incentive.

We’re also helping startups and small businesses to innovate, commercialise and grow their companies through the $392.4 million Industry Growth Program, and ensuring small business owners get the support they need through free access to specialised support services through our $10.9 million NewAccess for Small Business Owners program delivered by Beyond Blue and our $4 million Small Business Debt Helpline delivered by Financial Counselling Australia.

We’re doing all this because we know how important small businesses are to Australia.

A strong small business sector is good for Australia and good for our local communities.

That’s why the Albanese Labor government will continue backing small businesses, and ensuring the hard‑working Australians behind them stay at the heart of our decision‑making.