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The Council of Small Business Owners Australia (COSBOA) has called for the state governments to provide relief on the costs of energy which are currently crippling small business owners around the country.
Peter Strong, CEO, COSBOA, made the comments ahead of this month’s National Small Business Summit, slated to begin in Melbourne on August 23.
Strong explained small business are suffering from unprecedented rises in the cost of energy. The small business advocate suggested more pressure needed to be brought to bear on state governments to demonstrate leadership on the energy crisis that is currently threatening the nation’s businesses.
Strong believes a 12-month freeze on energy costs would go some way to providing relief
A recent review by the Federal Government recommended the implementation of a clean energy target for all energy service providers which has raised concerns from some quarters that the energy companies will simply pass on the costs of obtaining these certificates to their customers. Speculation is already rife that this year alone, the average household will pay $5 more a week for electricity, let alone the cost to small businesses.
“The Federal Government is focusing on action and COSBOA supports them and the Finkel Review recommendations. But we need the state governments to not only support the Federal action, but take action of their own.
“That action is not only releasing gas supplies, but also stopping the continual energy price rises through subsidies to retail power suppliers,” said Strong.
“The states must come to an agreement to subsidise retail providers. State governments are in a position to negotiate with the retail providers to ensure there are no more increases to energy costs for at least the next 12 months.
Strong believes the Finkel Review provides a strong case for subsidies.
“COSBOA believe the Federal Government is leading the way and must now approve all the recommendations from the Finkel Review. Each state must also show leadership and stop the power costs increases. Only then we will have certainty for small businesses,” concluded Strong.
Strong expects energy and the rising costs for small businesses across Australia will be a key issue discussed at the summit.
The Vodafone National Small Business Summit 2017 takes place August 23-25 at The Event Centre, Collins Square, Docklands, Melbourne.