The budget must secure our economic future

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Pottinger research commissioned by the Business Council shows that this year’s budget must lay the groundwork to spur investment and leverage our national strengths, said Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott.

“We know this budget will have to begin the task of fiscal repair and accelerate our recovery. It will not be about austerity or major new spending, we have to get through this by preparing the economy for the big changes that lie ahead.

“At the same time, the world is changing around us.

“As Pottinger demonstrates, we are at the heart of major changes, including the rise of Asia, technological and digital advances, and the global adoption of green energy sources.

“These changes present great opportunities for Australia and by reversing a record level of investment, we can secure the secure, well-paying jobs that Australians are looking for.

“Emerging opportunities in areas such as renewable energy, technological revolution and the growth of the bioeconomy can be sources of new growth and new jobs for Australia – but we will have to beat them from other nations.

“We know we can do this because many Australian businesses are already at the forefront, but it will mean leapfrogging larger nations with deeper job pools.

“To succeed, we will have to compete with much larger nations to attract capital and transform our economy.

“It is business investment that will transform our economy, but it still languishes at levels not seen since the recession of the early 1990s.

“Australia will need to win the global mobile talent war and ensure Australians can pick up the right skills quickly through a 21st century skills system.

“We will need to urgently address the severe structural impediments that risk holding back the private sector, including acute labor shortages and supply chain issues.

“It’s more important than ever that we get the most out of our workforce.

“The shortage of workers is creating havoc for businesses large and small in the country’s essential supply chains and contributing to inflationary pressures.

“And, once and for all, we need to make doing business in Australia easier.

“The government has already started to put the groundwork in place to prepare, this budget is a chance to do even more.”

Read Pottinger Investing in Australia’s future report here

Read the Business Council budget proposal here

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