Regions reveal cost of energy to small business roadshow

ELECTRICITY prices almost double that of New South Wales and Victoria sees South Australian businesses significantly disadvantaged, small business owners have told a Regional Small Business Roadshow held by Federal Small Business Minister Michael McCormack. 

In Murray Bridge on the second South Australian stop, Mr McCormack and local MP Tony Pasin met with small business in a tour to hear more about how the Federal Government can help Australia’s small businesses.

“There is no better way to understand the needs and aspirations of Australia’s small businesses than to meet with them directly – in their shops, farms and offices – to hear firsthand how the Government can help,” Mr McCormack said.

“The Coalition has delivered a lot for small business in red tape reduction, the instant asset write-off programme and protecting our owner-driver truckies, just to name a few, but I know there is more work to do.”

Mr McCormack said Tony Pasin’s advocacy for Barker’s more than 15,000 small businesses has helped see the Federal Coalition act to protect South Australia’s small businesses in the face of regular blackouts and high electricity prices.

“South Australia’s Federal MPs have told me how the State’s energy market and prices leave small business counting the cost, which is why I wanted to come and meet small businesses directly to hear how the Federal can help,” Mr McCormack said.

Barker MP Tony Pasin said rising electricity costs means farmers and small businesses bear the brunt of an ideological approach to energy policy.

“With prices almost double that or New South Wales and Victoria, small businesses are left counting the cost of Labor’s ideology and the cost of living is driven up for everyday hard working Australians,” Mr Pasin said.

“Those operating small businesses are resourceful people, but with electricity prices almost double that of New South Wales and Victoria, South Australian small businesses are significantly disadvantaged, which stifles investment and contributes to high unemployment rates.”

Mr McCormack said the Federal Coalition Government will take ideology out of the energy debate.

“The stories we have heard today are real. And whilst the Labor Party describes eight blackouts in recent memory as a ‘hiccup’, we know people should not be some pawn in an ideological game from South Australian Labor and its ideological identical in Canberra,” Mr McCormack said.

“They deserve respect. They deserve lights which switch on and freezers which don’t defrost. They deserve affordable and reliable power.

“That’s why the Federal Coalition Government will turn the ideology off and keep the lights on.”

Cristy Houghton