VIC State Budget should reduce business costs

Victorian businesses are calling on the State Government to reduce business costs for hard hit businesses in the budget being handed down on Tuesday.

The Victorian Head of the Australian Industry Group, Tim Piper, said business costs had been increasing over the last 12 months and that businesses in the State could not withstand further government imposts.

“The Government has continued to impose significant business costs – both direct and indirect – on businesses in the state. That cannot be maintained if Victoria is to retain a competitive position. The truth is many businesses need costs to be reduced,” Mr Piper said.

“Last year’s mental health levy imposed a $3.2 billion slug on businesses, and the Government has continued to look for ways to increase revenue. We believe the best way to improve the budget and prevent the budgetary hole from getting worse is to energise businesses.

“This budget needs to stimulate the economy, encourage the development of skills, create opportunities for innovative and positive business action and encourage capital investment. It must be one about driving businesses and forming a strong partnership and bond between business and the State Government.

Mr Piper said the increasing costs through inflationary pressures, the added Covid costs, the huge increases in freight costs, the likely wage increases and the resultant pressure on margins, should all be factors that influence the budgetary decisions. He said government must recognise the difficult position of many businesses and work to restore confidence.

“Victorian businesses should be encouraged to invest locally through additional support measures and reductions in business costs,” Mr Piper said.

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