Today’s budget shows the ACT Government recognises the need for a diverse and resilient economy
that supports business, provides jobs and attracts investment, according to Canberra Business
“A number of initiatives funded in the budget will help boost some of our most successful sectors
and those with potential for significant growth,” Canberra Business Council Chief Executive Officer,
Chris Faulks said.
“The budget recognises the importance of the private sector in ensuring the ACT has a broad and
robust economy that can weather economic ups and downs, such as the challenges currently being
presented by cuts in Federal sector spending and employment.
“Overall the budget provides nearly $70 million for initiatives designed to stimulate business.
“A record $2.5 billion over four years is set to be spent on the ACT infrastructure program.
Investment in infrastructure will help drive our local construction and building sector, but needs to
be focused on productive infrastructure that will create long term employment and financial returns.
The Australia Forum is an example of productive infrastructure.
“The ACT Government plans to access the Federal Government’s Asset Recycling Initiative to help
fund infrastructure projects. Under this initiative, the ACT will not only receive returns from the sale
of existing assets, but also 15 per cent of the price of the asset sold if all sale proceeds are allocated
to new infrastructure investment.
“Encouraging start-ups and business expansion is also smart and the budget will do this through its
CBR Innovation Network, Young Business Connect initiative and the Supporting Local Business and
Private Sector Transition Funds. These initiatives will help encourage people to create new local
businesses that could be major employers in the future.
“Canberra Business Council believes the ACT has a unique innovation ecosystem and the potential to
be global player in the digital economy because of the volume of companies and institutions with ICT
expertise who are undertaking research and development in this field, our high personal internet
usage, and the number of local businesses already embracing teleworking and e-commerce.
“The budget commits over $85 million to digital technology to make government services more
efficient through projects like iConnect, electronic tendering and and improved automation of
invoice payments and revenue collection.’
“This creates opportunities for Canberra ICT companies to bid for this work.”
“Decreases in stamp duty and the subsequent savings on commercial sector properties and
increasing the payroll tax threshold will make Canberra a more attractive location for businesses.
“However, there are some imposts being wrought on the business community in this budget, in
particular the increase in the Fire and Emergency Service Levy on commercial properties worth over
$2 million,” Ms Faulks concluded.
(Media Release Canberra Business Council)