20/03/2013 - 15:12

Business urges new Cabinet to 'get to it quickly'

20/03/2013 - 15:12

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Business urges new Cabinet to 'get to it quickly'

Business groups have urged the new Liberal-National Cabinet to quickly implement commitments made during the election campaign, particularly reducing red tape and tackling the rising cost of doing business.  

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCIWA), Chamber of Minerals and Energy (CME) and the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC) today all congratulated the new Barnett Cabinet.

However all were quick to point out that the new ministers needed to get to work immediately in order for WA to capitalise on the “historic opportunity” it currently faces.

“A priority for government should be to reduce the red-tape burden on employers, particularly small business,” CCIWA chief executive James Pearson said.

“During the election campaign there was a strong understanding from government that more is needed to cut red-tape.

“Now we need to make this a reality.”

Treasurer Troy Buswell, who retains his treasury and transport portfolios, announced during the election campaign at a WA Business News event the payroll tax threshold will be increased from $750,000 to $850,000 by 2015-16.

AMEC today called on the new Cabinet to increase the threshold further to $1.5 million.

“This change does not go far enough and is not in line with average wage increases. AMEC urges the Treasurer to readdress this issue,” AMEC chief executive Simon Bennison said.

CME chief executive Reg Howard-Smith today said WA’s attractiveness as a place to develop resources projects is under threat due to additional layers of taxation and charges which are driving up business costs.

“Policy initiatives that focus on reducing costs, duplication and red tape will deliver ongoing economic benefits to all Western Australians,” he said.

The CME said of particular interest to the WA resource sector is the implementation of the following commitments:

  • The expansion of the Department of Mines and Petroleum’s approvals tracking scheme into the Department of Water, The Department of Environment Regulation and the Environmental Protection Authority.
  • The development of a publically available online biodiversity, water and cultural heritage database and virtual library.
  • The creation of a separate dedicated environmental regulatory department to look over all environmental approvals, associated enforcement and waste management functions.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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