29 Aug 2020

NAB CEO Statement on Victorian Economic Recovery

The Herald Sun asked business leaders in Victoria for their views on the impact of COVID-19 and the path to easing restrictions. Here is what I shared with them:

Every day I’m speaking with customers and it is clear this pandemic has deeply hurt families, businesses, livelihoods and the economy. The closed shops I see on my evening walk in Melbourne are stark, sad images of the havoc COVID-19 is causing. As difficult as this is, the measures introduced to protect lives have been necessary.

Our 34,000 colleagues at NAB have been impacted greatly. Almost overnight most had to adjust to working from home, while others have kept serving in branches and business centres. They do this to support customers when they need us the most, while at the same time supporting themselves and loved ones.

I could not be prouder of them.

There is no playbook for responding to this crisis. Governments need to be flexible and act on the latest health advice.

The blueprint the Government is developing for how restrictions will be eased is important to provide clarity for Victorians, especially businesses. We must be cautious and vigilant – the experience in Auckland demonstrates how quickly things change.

It will take time to recover from this pandemic. But I’m confident that we can recover and start opening businesses, creating jobs again and getting on with our lives.

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