BUSINESS OUTLOOK BRIGHT IN SUNSHINE STATE

BUSINESS OUTLOOK BRIGHT IN SUNSHINE STATE

ACTING Premier Andrew Fraser has praised figures from the latest National Australia Bank (NAB) Business survey, showing Queensland enterprises bucked a national trend by recording improved business conditions.

Although all other states deteriorated last month, Fraser says Queensland’s private sector recorded the second highest level of business confidence.

"The NAB also noted a sharp pickup in construction confidence, which it attributed in part to a strengthening outlook for construction in Queensland and progress with the reconstruction effort," he says.

Shadow Treasurer Tim Nicholls says while the NAB monthly business survey results were encouraging, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) report released today painted a different picture.

“The CCIQ report shows Queensland small businesses are paying the price, slugged $7 billion in taxes and charges a year, with the cost of State Government red tape increasing (by) more than 30 per cent over the past five years,” says Nicholls.

The Bligh Government claims to have successfully countered difficult borrowing conditions and poor consumer sentiment by maintaining the lowest payroll tax rate in the nation.

“We also have the most competitive overall tax regime for small to medium businesses, as judged by the independent firm, Pitcher Partners,” says Fraser.

"A new business commissioner will start next week to help slash red tape and be a voice for small and medium business – a move endorsed by the CCIQ."

However, Nicholls warns that more tax headaches are on the way.

“Businesses will be hammered again with Labor’s job-destroying carbon tax passing the Senate today and taking effect in less than a month,” he says.

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