Retail Industry Hopes for Tax Reforms, Infrastructure Investment, and Skills Funding

Melbourne, Australia, 2017-May-08 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) and its members are hoping next week’s Federal Budget announcement will bring relief to the industry through tax reform, smart infrastructure investment and additional skills funding.

Russell Zimmerman, Executive Director of the ARA said the retail industry have been looking to both the Government and the Opposition to employ a fairer tax system to improve international competitiveness for retailers and stimulate economic growth.

“Retailers continue to face significant cost pressures in the Australian market, and reducing corporate taxes across the board will help businesses stay viable in a difficult operating environment,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“We are committed to reducing the overall tax burden to individuals and businesses to build consumer confidence, put more money back in consumer’s pockets and encourage productive investment.”

The ARA will also look for the Federal Budget to include sensible infrastructure investment to lift productivity and efficiency across both urban and regional Australia.

“There is an urgent need to improve retail supply chain operations to remain competitive in the international market,” Mr Zimmerman said, “and enhancing transport links to key retail hubs for both consumers and businesses will improve Australia’s business performance and achieve economic growth.”

The ARA believe developing the western suburbs of Sydney will create smoother efficiencies for Australian businesses, increase retail tourism and improve supply chain logistics.

“The substantial investment in both Badgerys Creek Airport and the inland rail link between Melbourne and Brisbane will not only boost the economy, but better connect us to global markets,” Mr Zimmerman said.

The ARA also welcome additional skills funding in the 2017 Budget and encourage the Government to maintain funding in education and training programs.

“Although the Government has already announced significant changes to 457 Visas, the ARA urge the Government to work with retailers to identify skills shortages across the retail sector and make necessary changes to address high-end skills into the country,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“As Australia’s biggest private employer, promoting retail as a viable and exciting career choice for young people is critical.

“The ARA are working with its members to ensure employers are supported in upskilling their staff with specific skills needed within the industry, and will look to the Government for their support in next week’s Budget,” Mr Zimmerman said.

Mr Zimmerman will be available for media comment and interviews in Canberra following the Federal Budget announcement on Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 May 2017.

For interview opportunities with ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman call: The ARA Media Line T: 0439 612 556 E:media@retail.org.au

About the Australian Retailers Association:

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the retail industry’s peak representative body representing Australia’s $310 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. The ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.

SOURCE: Australian Retailers Association

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