24 October 2017
Reports today that almost 75 per cent of small and medium South Australian businesses oppose the state Government’s planned bank tax demonstrate again that the proposed levy should be dumped before it further damages the SA economy.
Australian Bankers’ Association Chief Executive Anna Bligh said new BDO Accounting research showing that 72 per cent of small and medium SA businesses are opposed to the bank tax is further proof that the tax will further erode the SA economy.
“I urge the government to listen to local businesses that help drive the South Australian economy.
“The BDO research reported in the Adelaide Advertiser today couldn’t be clearer. Small and medium businesses are the engine room of the state, accounting for more than 90 per cent of all businesses in SA, employing around 250,000 people. They understand what is good for business and in turn the economy and what is bad,” Ms Bligh said.
“The SA bank tax is bad and damaging policy. It will make SA less competitive at a time when the state desperately needs new jobs and investment, particularly for young South Australians who are increasingly being forced to look interstate for work,” Ms Bligh said.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has also weighed in on the debate, calling out the SA bank tax as negative and dangerous policy.
The Australian reports that in a speech today, Premier Berejiklian will highlight the SA bank tax as an emblem of short term policy making with negative long term consequences. It’s understood that she will argue that ‘for governments to use business as a scapegoat because they are in a political pickle, or they haven’t managed to find innovative solutions to budget challenges, is inexcusable’.
Anna Bligh said that it was unsurprising that opposition to the tax was continuing to grow.
“A bank tax will hurt South Australia. It will do nothing to grow the economy or create employment, it’s expected to do just the opposite.
“There are now just a matter of days before the South Australian Parliament decides to either protect South Australian jobs and investment, or undermine it by introducing an unpopular bank tax.
“We’re urging Members of Parliament to join with the South Australian Liberal Opposition, and cross benchers Robert Brokenshire, Dennis Hood and John Darley to vote down a tax that will hurt all South Australians,” Ms Bligh said.
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“Since the Banking Code was first introduced in 1993, the process to independently review the Code has continued to deliver improvements.”
“A number of our banks actually have maternity leave lending products that are specific to people on parental leave, paid and unpaid, to help them through, what as I said, can be a difficult time.”