Small business, families, to take budget limelight

nthony Albanese is expected to emphasise small business ahead of the federal budget in May.

nthony Albanese is expected to emphasise small business ahead of the federal budget in May. Photo:AAP

Australia’s 2.5 million small businesses are expected to take centre stage with the prime minister set to deliver a pre-budget pitch.

“Helping Australian families and small family businesses with their energy bills was a key priority in last year’s budget,” Anthony Albanese will say at a small business summit on Thursday.

“And as we put together next month’s budget, small businesses and families will again be front and centre in our thinking.”

No specific policy measures will be outlined but the prime minister will talk up the benefits of rooftop solar and batteries as a “smart investment that delivers an important return to businesses on tight margins”.

“One in three small businesses with solar is a great start – and I’m confident that with the right investments and support and the continuing advances in technology, that number will continue to rise,” he will say.

Cost of living relief is on the cards for the federal budget to be handed down on May 14, though the treasurer has warned there will be no generous cash handouts that risk stoking inflation.

Mr Albanese’s address follows a speech by Peter Dutton on Wednesday, in which the opposition leader described Labor’s workplace relations changes and “renewables only” energy policies as working against small businesses.

He also flagged nuclear technology as an opportunity to drive competition and productivity by bringing down energy costs.

Peter Dutton says Labor’s workplace relations and energy policies work against small business. Photo: AAP

Mr Albanese will say his government’s energy response is focused on proven technologies that will “make a difference here and now”.

“You heard from the opposition leader yesterday about his plan to have a plan to build nuclear reactors somewhere up and down the east coast, sometime before 2050 at a cost somewhere in the hundreds of billions of dollars,” the prime minister will say.

“Solar power is reliable, fast and affordable – and all the more so when combined with storage.”

The prime minister will also defend his government’s industrial relations changes, which include a pathway for casuals to convert to a permanent role if they wish.

“Our government is pro-business and pro-worker,” he will say, recognising that without employers there can be no “good jobs, fair wages or decent conditions for employees”.

“That’s the constructive and balanced approach we’ve sought to bring to our industrial relations reforms.”

Reserve Bank assistant governor Brad Jones will also address the small business event.


Stay informed, daily
A FREE subscription to The New Daily arrives every morning and evening.
The New Daily is a trusted source of national news and information and is provided free for all Australians. Read our editorial charter
Copyright © 2024 The New Daily.
All rights reserved.