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Retail Rebound Depends On States Staying Open, Despite COVID-19

The future growth in business investment and higher wages relies on governments keeping the country open, and not reacting to COVID-19 variations with harsh restrictions.

This is according to Business Council of Australia chief executive Jennifer Westacott, who notes “near record lows of business investment” and warns against anything that hampers a robust recovery.

“Locking in a strong recovery will mean sticking to the plan to reopen, managing the supply constraints that are putting a handbrake on the recovery and tearing down Fortress Australia,” she said.

“We have to continue reducing the economic friction that makes it hard to do new things.”

Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive Andrew McKellar said, likewise, “businesses and the community cannot afford a return to the disparate stop-start measures of lockdowns and restrictions.

“It’s critical that governments shift the focus away from case numbers to how those cases are managed in the health system,” Mr McKellar said.

“To prosper, Australian businesses need access to skilled migrants, international students and working holiday-makers to resolve unmet labour demand.

“If stronger wages growth is to be realised, it is vital that these gains come from increased productivity and economic growth rather than supply-side constraints.”

This comes as Josh Frydenberg forecast the creation of a million new jobs over the next five years, in his mid-year economic forecast.



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