Australia’s largest and most representative business network, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has welcomed the improvement in the budget bottom line, announced by the Government in its Mid-year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) today.
“Although economic growth was slower than expected, taxes paid by business and the people they employ have done the heavy lifting to help deliver a budget deficit for this year of $5.2 billion, which is less than half of what was predicted in May,” Australian Chamber CEO, James Pearson, said today.
“The estimated company tax receipts at $92.5 billion are $3 billion more than estimated in May, showing that concerns about the costs of business tax cuts were overblown. Taxes for small, medium and family enterprises have been reducing for four years now, but we cannot stop there. Policies and practical measures to reduce the cost of doing business, as well as make it easier to manage businesses, must be a priority for the government and the opposition, and the parliament should support them.
“With the good news comes caution. Today’s announcement is not a green light to spend to excess, particularly as the forecasts are built on optimistic estimates of economic and wage growth. The budget figures already include over $9 billion in foregone revenue and over $1 billion in expense on initiatives yet to be announced.
“Spending should be on initiatives that will boost productivity, including training Australians for the jobs of today and tomorrow and investing in cost-effective infrastructure.
“We welcome the allocation of funds to promote vocational education and training, and changes to the working holiday maker and seasonal work program, and the arrangements around them. These initiatives will help to encourage people to invest in their businesses to grow and create jobs and wealth for all Australians.”