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Greens focus on small business

Media Release
Christine Milne 8 Aug 2013

The Australian Greens have announced a plan to ease the pressure on small business by expanding tax breaks and strengthening the role of the national Small Business Commissioner.

These new initiatives follow yesterday's announcement that the Greens would lower the company tax rate from 30% to 28% for companies with turnovers of less than $2 million dollars.

"While Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott are ignoring the pressures faced by small businesses, the Greens are delivering a comprehensive plan that cares for and supports the people behind small businesses," Senator Christine Milne said.

"There are almost 2 million small businesses in Australia employing 5 million people, which is why they deserve a fairer go.

"The Greens recognise we should be supporting all small business owners, which is why we are lowering tax rates, expanding tax breaks and providing extra funding and legislative powers for the national Small Business Commissioner.

"Labor and the Coalition would prefer to give big business a corporate tax cut than help millions of small businesses with their cash flow.

"Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott should back our plan to encourage more Australians to invest in small business and help strengthen our economy."

The Greens small business plan includes:
• Increasing the instant asset write off threshold from $6,500 to $10,000 as recommended by the Henry Tax Review. The independent Parliamentary Budget Office estimates this initiative would cost $600 million over the forward estimates. This will help small businesses to purchase productive assets to help grow their businesses.
• Doubling the funding for the national Small Business Commissioner to $10 million to provide adequate resources for staffing, mediating disputes, carrying out research and advising the federal government on key policy decisions. The Greens also want to legislate this position to ensure the Commissioner has the power to be an effective advocate for small business and to prevent any incoming government from abolishing the position, which is what happened in Queensland when Campbell Newman took power.
• Cutting the company tax rate for small business by 2% at a cost of $1.75 billion over the forward estimates.
• Strengthening competition policy to prevent big business using their market power to gain unfair advantages over small business. For more information click here.

"I understand how hard it is to run a small business in Australia after running my own for over ten years," said Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, Australian Greens spokesperson on small business.

"In early 2013 the Greens bill to empower the Federal small business commissioner was rejected by the old parties despite stakeholder support for the proposed legislation.

"While the old parties pander to the demands of the big banks and the big miners the Greens will continue to stand up for the real engine-room of our economy - small businesses."


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