Craig Emerson says innovation not ignored
Wednesday, May 21, 2008/
Despite the cuts to the Federal Government’s Commercial Ready program, the Federal Small Business Minister Craig Emerson has dismissed claims that the budget has ignored small business and Australia’s innovative start-up culture.
Almost $1 billion of SME programs were cut in last week’s federal budget, inlcuding the $700 million Commercial Ready program. Businesses have been scathing about the decision to cut the program.
“We have a national innovation review underway that’s due to report in the middle of the year, and the review intends to bring about a national innovation system,” Emerson said on the sidelines of a conference in Melbourne yesterday.
“Small businesses can still access the research and development cash offset program, and obviously bigger businesses can access the R&D tax concession itself. There are tax offsets there as well for those businesses that don’t have sufficient income to claim the tax concessions.”
Emerson said that telecommunications expert and CSIRO director Terry Cutler’s review would build upon the findings of the Productivity Commission, which expressed concern about the Commercial Ready program. “The Productivity Commission has advised that there is a reasonable amount of evidence that [the program] was funding activities that otherwise would have gone ahead anyway.”
Small businesses may be reeling in the aftermath of the cuts, and will have to wait several months before knowing what other measures (if any) are in place, but Emerson assures them that the Government understands their needs.
“I’m batting for small business,” he says. “I ran a small business; Kevin Rudd ran a small business.
“Furthermore, those income tax cuts for small businesses are directly beneficial. One of the big things that governments can do is allow small businesses to keep more of their earnings. If they can do that, then through their own initiatives and enterprise they can do good things for themselves and this country.”
Be honest about your situation: How vulnerability helps businesses thrive Sue Parker DARE Group founder
Own it: The 10 things you need to do to manage your personal brand Lisa Stephenson Who Am I Projects founder
Six invaluable lessons: What 20 years in aged care taught me about being an entrepreneur Natasha Chadwick NewDirection Care founder
An entrepreneurial superpower: Eight tips to help develop resilience Adala Bolto ZADI Training co-founder
Going through a lull? Five areas you should invest in when sales drop Tamara Alaveras and Sonia Majkic 3 Phase Marketing co-founders
Pet-food lickers and changing-room strippers: Why you’ll never sell to people you don’t understand Ian Whitworth Scene Change co-founder
Blandification™ and the state of modern branding Jeffrey Oley The Offices co-founder
Why you should find the right role for the right person — not the other way around Bruce Stronge Outfit founder