Supporting our small businesses
The growth and expansion that we’re seeing around Central Otago at the moment is exciting.
When I visit the area I can feel a real buzz in the air. There’s a new confidence that is being reflected in the business sector as people invest in new enterprises, or develop current operations.
Many of you will be aware of the expansion of Alexandra’s Placemakers and New World supermarket. Faigan’s Store at Millers Flat has new Auckland owners, a new restaurant Paulina’s is open in Clyde,
Quality Flooring First Alexandra has recently opened, as has B&M Joinery in Cromwell, while Cromwell Pharmacy is expanding and opening another store.
As the new Minister of Small Business, and as your local MP, I am committed to ensuring that this growth continues because it will encourage further investment, improve property prices, create jobs and a better quality of life.
Small businesses are the backbone of the New Zealand economy. They account for around 97 percent of business.
It’s interesting that what we are seeing in Central Otago is being mirrored elsewhere in the country, with around a third of small businesses reporting an increase in their revenue in the past 12 months.
I am focused on helping small businesses get ahead because in doing so the whole community benefits. I am looking forward to catching up with Central Otago’s business community at an Alexandra, Clyde and Districts Business Breakfast on Friday and am keen to consult on ways that the Government can continue to support the area.
National has already introduced many initiatives to help small business, including cutting ACC levies by around $2 billion a year since 2011, which in turn has put more money back into workers, businesses, and motor vehicle owners’ pockets.
We’ve helped keep interest rates low and introduced 90-day trials, and a starting-out wage, to give businesses the confidence to take on new staff and give them a chance.
The Resource Management
Act has been overhauled to reduce costs and delays for businesses, and we’re rolling out faster broadband to almost 12,000 people around Alexandra, Clyde, Cromwell and Roxburgh as part of phase two of our Ultra-Fast Broadband programme.
The tax system is also a key issue for small businesses, that’s why we’ve also announced a business-focused tax package that will be positive, particularly for smaller operators. The aim is to reduce compliance costs and make tax simpler.
Contractors are also being supported and will be able to choose a withholding tax rate that suits their needs, rather than having one set for them.
As we’ve seen in Central
Otago, if small businesses succeed, the local economy is boosted and the whole community thrives.
Jacqui Dean is the MP for Waitaki.