Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer Wayne Swan, Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Greg Combet and Minister for Small Business Senator Nick Sherry today announced initiatives to help small businesses adjust to the carbon price.
The Gillard Government recognises that while the move to a low carbon future poses challenges, the carbon pricing mechanism will not apply to small business. Instead, around 500 of the biggest polluters in Australia will be required to pay for their pollution under the carbon pricing mechanism.
Small businesses will not have to count or monitor their carbon pollution or electricity use. They will not have to fill in a single form as part of the carbon price reform.
While most small businesses will not be materially affected by the carbon price, we recognise the huge contribution small business makes to our economy, which is why we will extend the small business instant asset write-off threshold to $6,500.
This will boost cash flow and help small businesses to grow and invest in assets, which may be more energy efficient.
The Government will also establish a $40 million program to provide information to small businesses and community organisations on practical measures they can take to reduce their energy costs.
Being able to get clear information from trusted sources is vital to small business.
This program will be delivered through grants to industry associations and non-government organisations which have established relationships with small businesses and community organisations.
The Gillard Government will also provide additional funding to improve delivery of clean technology advice and other non-grant business support programs to small and medium businesses. These include the Supplier Advocates and Enterprise Connect.
These measures will help small businesses invest in new equipment and get advice to help grow their business sustainably.
Additionally, all businesses in the food processing, metal forging and foundry industries will be able to apply for grants for energy efficiency improvements under the $200 million Clean Technology Food and Foundries Investment Program.
Further information about the Government's clean energy future and carbon price announcement is available at www.cleanenergyfuture.gov.au.
10 July 2011