Rudd to address small business summit

The Government’s small business summit has kicked off in Brisbane, with business leaders eager to find out whether the Government will offer assistance.

The Government’s small business summit has kicked off in Brisbane, with business leaders eager to find out whether the Government will offer assistance.

The interest in attending the summit has been so overwhelming it has been moved to the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

SmartCompany blogger Jason Gehrke is at the summit, and says there are a “wide range” of business groups attending.

“Initially the summit was one that was being organised by COSBOA and Commerce Queensland, but a lot of other groups have got wind of it. It seems that in the main there are a good number of different organisations here, so above and beyond just those two sponsoring organisations.

“I’ve been told about 550 people have been registered, and certain people have been ‘flagged’ and given special seating – this means they might be special interest groups the government wants to hear from,” Gehrke says. “But it’s quite a big turn out.”

Prime Minister Rudd, Treasurer Wayne Swan and Small Businesses Minister Craig Emerson are also attending the summit. The meeting has been organised by the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia.

COSBOA chief executive Jonathon Brake says his organisation will be urging the Government for tax relief and easier access to credit.

Lenders from the country’s largest banks are also in attendance to explain how the downturn has affected their small business lending practices.

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