Making Melbourne first choice for business

The City of Melbourne is making it easier to do business by cutting red tape, and attracting new investment and visitors to boost spending and restore confidence. 

​The draft Budget 2022-23 to be released on Tuesday includes $730,000 to extend the Business Concierge service – providing recovery and specialised support, startup advice and mentoring at no cost to more than 15,000 businesses.

A $1 million commitment for Invest Melbourne will ramp up work to encourage new proposals, attract global headquarters and significant projects, and simplify start-up processes.

More than 60 businesses looking to establish in Australia have already been identified, and Invest Melbourne is actively targeting these organisations to choose Melbourne over any other capital city.

A new digital system to fast-track permits is also set to be introduced, making it even easier for businesses and developers to lodge and track applications for dozens of different permit types, including on-street trading and business advertising.  

Over $500,000 will support more than 1,500 hospitality venues and 1,000 creatives through the extension of outdoor dining and busking permit fee waivers until 31 October. Since 2020, Council has absorbed $2 million in permit fees to ease the burden.

More than $33.7 million will be spent on events, festivals and creative initiatives to bring millions of visitors to Melbourne, and increase spending across retail, hospitality and cultural institutions. 

Precinct Associations will also receive $1 million in a further boost for neighbourhood businesses. 

The draft Budget 2022-23 will be announced on Tuesday 17 May, with a one-month period of public consultation to follow.

Quotes attributable to Lord Mayor Sally Capp

“We want Melbourne to be renowned as a ‘city of yes’ – a place that backs local businesses, grows our economy and creates more jobs for Melburnians.”   

“We’re waiving fees, providing specialised advice and boosting our events calendar to invest in Melbourne’s momentum and restore confidence.”

“By cutting red tape, we want to make it easier for businesses to get on with the job, rather than being caught up in the hassle and cost of paperwork.”   

Quotes attributable to Business and Global Opportunities portfolio lead Councillor Kevin Louey

“Precinct Associations play an incredibly important role in advocating for local businesses, bringing them together to share ideas and encouraging spending in local neighbourhoods.”

“It’s an important time to invest in our city precincts – that’s why we’re providing $1 million to create opportunities for networking, education and training, and promotions to activate every corner of our municipality.” 

Quotes attributable to Small Business portfolio lead Councillor Jason Chang

“Melbourne is the engine room of Victoria’s economy – and small business owners are integral to our city’s prosperity now and into the future.”  

“We know small business owners need our continued support, which is why we’re extending our Business Concierge service to provide one-on-one advice and assistance to thousands of traders.”

Fast facts on support for business:

  • $33.7 million for events, festivals and creative industry 
  • $1 million for Invest Melbourne 
  • $1 million for Precinct Associations  
  • $730,000 for Business Concierge  
  • $500,000 to waive permit fees for outdoor dining and busking  

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