Seven in 10 small businesses in Australia plan to grow their business in the next 12 months, but uncertainty around Covid-19 is the number one thing holding them back, according to new research.
NAB, Australia’s biggest business bank, commissioned a survey of more than 550 Australian businesses to better understand the key issues on their minds and what their plans are for growth. The survey was taken between June 29 and July 1 this year.
Almost 3 in 10 small businesses said greater certainty on COVID restrictions would encourage them to invest, meanwhile 1 in 5 firms said greater levels of COVID vaccinations would help.
Australia’s economic fortunes are tied to the success of the small business sector as small businesses contribute almost $418 billion to GDP – equivalent to 32 per cent of the domestic economy. They also employ two out of three working Australians.
The findings of the survey were presented in a special report, From Survival to Success, which NAB released today.
In his forward to the report, NAB CEO Ross McEwan welcomed National Cabinet’s plan to move from restrictions to freedoms, as Australia achieved greater levels of vaccination. He added this “gives us all a light at the end of the tunnel, and the ability for businesses to plan for a more ‘normal’ future in 2022.”
The NAB research also identified reforms that small business needed to thrive, namely: 1. Further tax relief or incentives. 2. Less regulation. 3. Support to hire, train and retain staff, including skilled workers. 4. Strategies to implement new technology. 5. Help with managing cash flow.