Updates from CommBank, Ai Group, Australian Retailers Association and more

Businesses buy local to tackle supply chain issues

Almost one in four businesses are purchasing more from local Australian companies to overcome supply chain problems rather than importing from overseas, new Commonwealth Bank research shows. The research shows most businesses are maintaining a positive outlook regarding purchasing plans, notwithstanding the major challenges of continuing supply chain issues and rising costs.

Welcome to Ai Group’s new Head of National Workplace Relations Policy – Brent Ferguson

“The national employer association Ai Group is pleased to announce the appointment of Brent Ferguson as the new Head of National Workplace Relations Policy,” Innes Willox, Chief Executive of the national employer association Ai Group said today.

“Brent succeeds Stephen Smith in this important role leading Ai Group’s team of workplace relations policy and advocacy professionals in representing Ai Group members in workplace relations policy matters. This includes representations to Government and Opposition parties, submissions to numerous inquiries, major cases in the FWC and Courts, and influencing the public debate.

Energy Ministers Meeting – Communique

Energy Ministers met today to discuss the status of the market following recent volatilty, progress on actions Ministers agreed at their last meeting and agreed new reforms as the economy moves to net zero emissions. Energy Ministers are aware of the significant cost of living pressures facing Australian consumers, and were pleased to see that decisions already taken have helped to stabilise eastern electricity and gas markets – this has been affirmed by the heads of the energy market bodies.


Australian Energy Ministers right across the political spectrum have come together today, agreeing on the next steps to deal with the major challenges in the Australian energy market – focussing on energy supply, reliability, and affordability, while reducing emissions.

All jurisdictions and market bodies have worked extremely hard to keep the lights on through the recent energy crisis. Ministers agreed to extend the powers of the Australian Energy Market Operator to enable them to manage supply risks to the East Coast gas market for the 2023 winter.

Free program to help Queensland businesses save money, environment

A joint initiative between the Palaszczuk Government and Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) helping businesses reduce their bills and impact on the environment has been extended.

Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon has announced the Palaszczuk Government will invest $1.5 million to continue the popular ecoBiz program, which to-date has helped thousands of Queensland businesses implement sustainable initiatives.

Shadow Economy Procurement Connected Policy

As part of the 2018‑19 Budget and in response to the Black Economy Taskforce’s Final Report, the Government announced a range of measures to tackle the shadow economy including a commitment that, from 1 July 2019, Government procurement processes will exclude businesses that do not have a satisfactory tax record.

Father’s Day gift spending impacted by cost of living challenges as consumers seek more sustainable gifts

Australians are forecast to spend $735 million on Father’s Day gifts in a welcome boost for retailers, however purchases are down 7.7% on last year’s projections, as the rising cost of living starts to impact consumers.

Research from the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) in collaboration with Roy Morgan shows over a third of Australians (36%) plan on buying a Father’s Day gift, down 4% on last year. Of those planning a gift purchase, 42% said the current cost of living challenges will impact how much they’ll spend.

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