State Budget 2022-23 submission: enabling and growing business

The 2022-23 State Budget must enable business to play a leading role in Victoria’s economic recovery according to the Victorian Chamber.

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While the Victorian Government played a substantial role to support the economy over the past two years, the Victorian Chamber’s Budget Submission says business will have a critical role to play as we recover from the impact of COVID-19.

The Victorian Chamber is grateful to our members who helped shape our priorities and recommendations. The submission was also informed by our Cost and Ease of Doing Business in Victoria report.

The Victorian Chamber’s Budget Submission is guided by three themes:

  • Enabling business: Victorian businesses are efficient and have become even more resilient since COVID-19 hit. The 2022-23 State Budget provides the perfect opportunity to enable them to achieve their full potential.
  • Growing business: Victorian businesses need to be encouraged to grow in their current industries while also expanding into existing and emerging ones
  • Ease of doing business: Victorian businesses need an environment more conducive to investment through improvements to the regulatory and tax environment. Our Cost and Ease of Doing Business in Victoria report made this abundantly clear.

Recommendations

The Victorian Chamber’s 2022-23 State Budget Submission contains 73 recommendations that prioritise targeted support for business and improving the efficiency of administrative or regulatory processes and tax, with significant focus on regional Victoria’s role in the state’s economic recovery.

Key concepts include implementing a concierge to help businesses navigate regulations, evolving public service culture to better understand business, fast-tracking government approvals, grants and programs to get business back in business, and expanding the facilitation role of Invest Victoria to have a greater focus on boosting the success of small business and regional industry.

Major recommendations include:

  • Funding to provide a regulatory concierge model to reduce the time, cost and administrative burden for business owners with a unit established in all government department and regulators
  • Doubling wage subsidies for hiring apprentices or trainees and provide businesses with $1000 in support for each job experience opportunity created
  • Committing to zero youth unemployment by 2026
  • Increasing the payroll tax threshold to $1.2 million in Metropolitan Victoria and decrease the rate to zero in Regional Victoria
  • Funding over four years for a business case each year for high-speed trains to Regional Victoria, starting with Ballarat, and begin collaborating with the Federal Government on a joint funding model for the project
  • Financial support for international students so they pick Victoria over other states and countries and fund an international campaign highlighting the benefits of living and studying here
  • $1 billion over three years for a forward program of tram stop upgrades with work to target small and medium businesses
  • A $200 million events attraction industry fund to secure world-leading events. This should include a business plan to secure the 2027 Rugby World Cup
  • $150 million over four years for a Victorian Space Strategy including $100 million to build a silicon chip manufacturing facility to decrease reliance on overseas chips
  • Setting aside $500 million in contingency over two years to respond to any further COVID-19 or influenza outbreaks so that Victoria’s economy will not need to face restrictions
  • Introducing a subsidy for industries transitioning to clean hydrogen as a primary energy source and providing additional funding for electric vehicle charging stations across Victoria
  • Funding a targeted, industry-led `Work in the Regions’ initiative to encourage new regional Victorians and young people to work in industries facing shortages.

Click here to read our full submission for the 2022-23 State Budget

The Victorian Chamber’s recommendations are measured and will have a significant economic multiplier effect leading to more jobs and higher levels of economic development and investment.

It is important that funding for our recommendations is drawn from a combination of new expenditure and reprioritisation of existing funding committed in previous budgets, reducing pressure on the revenue base and helping create a pathway back to surplus.

Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Paul Guerra said, “After the last two difficult years, this will be a critical budget for Victoria as we look to turbocharge our economic recovery and move forward to create a state that is the best place to live, work, learn and operate a business.

“Business will have a pivotal role to play, as they should, in our economic recovery and these 73 recommendations are based on the feedback of businesses right across Victoria. The recommendations will enable, grow and ease the cost of doing business, leading to higher employment and investment.

“This Budget provides the opportunity to restore Victoria’s status as an economic powerhouse and Melbourne’s mantle as the world’s most liveable city by enabling business to lead our recovery and growth.”

Advocacy and Support

For more information on the Victorian Chamber’s advocacy work, please visit the Policy and Advocacy section of our website.

If you have any questions or would like to be involved in our advocacy work, please contact us via policy@victorianchamber.com.au.

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