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Regional small businesses lead the way.



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03/097

Regional small businesses lead the way

According to the Yellow Pages ‘Business Index’ released today, small businesses and in particular regional businesses, have strong confidence in the economic management of the Federal Government but are concerned about state and local government regulation.

Regional rural and remote communities are doing it tough after the double whammy of the recent bushfires and drought but they haven’t thrown in the towel. The Business Index found that;

“regional businesses continued to express greater confidence than their metropolitan counterparts.”

The small businesses I’ve spoken to around Australia, from Coonabarabran to Corryong to Cairns, have told me of the difficulties they are facing and how the Federal Government can best help local communities.

This Yellow Pages survey demonstrates how important it is that the Federal Government gives small business confidence in the economy by keeping interest rates low, holding inflation in check and maintaining strong economic growth.

There was a welcome pick up in positive attitudes by small business about their growth and prosperity. According to the Business Index: • Regional businesses were noticeably more positive about the state of the Australian Economy;

• Selling price trends were stronger in regional areas; • Regional businesses surveyed recorded significantly stronger capital expenditure performances; and • Regional businesses surveyed were far more likely to identify state and local

government regulations as a business concern.

While it is pleasing to get positive feedback from small businesses around Australia that they “appreciate” the sound economic management of the Federal Government it is concerning that state governments and councils are still seen to be hampering business growth.

Media contact: Sasha Grebe, 02 9929 9822 27 May 2003 CMR03-113