Grounded: Get Australia Moving

October 22, 2020

Australia is losing $319 million a day in domestic and international air travel.

Grounded planes and deserted airports mean 34,000 people are in a holding pattern – they’ve lost their jobs or had their hours dramatically reduced.

We’re lagging behind other countries that have restarted aviation and the delay is hurting agricultural exports, regional tourism and the events industry.

We are calling on the National Cabinet to announce a plan for domestic travel before December and begin mapping out how we can gradually and safely remove international travel restrictions once health conditions allow.

Getting Australians flying again around the country before Christmas would be a $3.3 billion gift to the national economy.

We are not asking for a free for all – we need a highly-targeted, careful and gradual reopening of the economy based on health advice with robust nationally consistent systems in place for departures and arrivals, quarantining, local containment, and digital tracking and tracing.

Australia is losing $319 million a day in domestic and international air travel.

Grounded planes and deserted airports mean 34,000 people are in a holding pattern – they’ve lost their jobs or had their hours dramatically reduced.

We’re lagging behind other countries that have restarted aviation and the delay is hurting agricultural exports, regional tourism and the events industry.

We are calling on the National Cabinet to announce a plan for domestic travel before December and begin mapping out how we can gradually and safely remove international travel restrictions once health conditions allow.

Getting Australians flying again around the country before Christmas would be a $3.3 billion gift to the national economy.

We are not asking for a free for all – we need a highly-targeted, careful and gradual reopening of the economy based on health advice with robust nationally consistent systems in place for departures and arrivals, quarantining, local containment, and digital tracking and tracing.

Support the campaign

Support the campaign to get Australia moving by emailing your local members of Parliament today.
    To do list:
    • By Christmas, the state borders are open and there are clear national protocols in place for arrivals and departures, quarantining, local containment, and digital tracking and tracing
    • Careful and gradual reopening of international borders with priority given to:
      • returning Australians
      • international students, signalling to them we will be open for term one next year subject to agreed protocols for quarantining
      • targeted skilled visas for high demand workers to support business growth in Australia
    • Targeted visas aligned to the Global Business and Talent Attraction Taskforce
    • Establish a nationally consistent, risk-based approach to quarantine
    • Establish a process to identify and begin negotiating safe travel corridors with low risk countries

    State border closures have seen passenger numbers on Australia’s busiest air routes plummet 91 per cent since March, crippling the aviation sector and causing harmful knock-on effects in tourism and hospitality.

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    The economic fallout from the shutdown of domestic aviation over the past seven months is $17 billion and $61 billion for international flights.
    More than 34,000 people nationwide have been affected by job losses and furloughed positions. The fallout includes widespread job losses across the aviation sector including airlines, airports, catering, ground handling and transport services.

    We can’t afford to be left behind and miss out on opportunities to establish safe travel corridors with other low-risk countries who have also managed the virus well.

    Passenger aircraft carry much more than people.

    International aviation generates about $100 billion a year in export revenue and supports about 515,000 jobs across the country.

    Putting a nationally agreed plan in place for international travel will allow us to ramp up this critical sector once we get the green light. This is not a temporary problem for Australia. If we fail to begin carefully reopening, we will miss out.

    Support the campaign to get Australia moving by emailing your local members of parliament today.

    Authorised by J. Clark for the Business Council of Australia of 120 Collins St, Melbourne.

    The 2021-22 Victorian Budget has proposed a payroll tax hike.

    A mid-sized business with 250 employees paying the average full-time wage will pay over $60,000 more payroll tax a year.

    Payroll tax is a tax on jobs.

    Payroll tax makes no sense. Increases to payroll tax act as a disincentive for businesses to grow and create more jobs. It's as simple as that.

    The costs are felt by employees through slower wages growth, consumers through higher prices, super funds through lower dividends and jobseekers who can't find work.

    This is the worst possible time to increase taxes.

    Victorian businesses have been - and continue to be - smashed by long and difficult lockdowns. Why on earth would we want to slug them now?

    Victoria is becoming an uncompetitive place to do business.

    Some of the biggest employers in the state will simply look elsewhere to do business, invest in new projects and create jobs. Other states are cutting payroll tax and competing hard for business.

    Email your local MP an urge them to oppose the tax on jobs.

    A large business with 5,000 employees paying the average full-time wage will pay around $4 million more payroll tax a year. That's the equivalent of 43 jobs.

    Everyone agrees mental health is an important issue especially in Victoria where the community has borne the brunt of this pandemic.

    That’s why the business community already spends millions of dollars on mental health programs for their employees and contributes significantly to many community initiatives.

    Having a job, being productive and having a purpose is important for good mental health. If mental health is the issue, a tax on jobs is not the answer.

    The business community stands ready to work with the Victorian Parliament on a better solution to the mental health challenges.

    Email your local MP and urge them to oppose the tax on jobs and work with the business community.

    A large business with 25,000 employees paying the average full-time wage will pay over $20 million more payroll tax a year. That’s the equivalent of over 240 jobs.

    What businesses are saying:

    "On a business of our size, it has a disproportionate impact. It can be the difference between employing a few more people or investing in new equipment to build a long-term sustainable business in Victoria"
    Paul Bowker | 21 May 2021
    Co-owner of Brick Lane Brewing
    The Age
    “It is very disappointing to see Victoria impose an additional levy on payroll, a tax on jobs by any other name. This levy targets the businesses that employ the most Australians and it diminishes Victoria’s standing as a place to do business and employ people.”
    Rob Scott | 20 May 2021
    CEO Wesfarmers
    Australian Financial Review
    “It’s a disincentive for employment. It’s a lot of money and if we reach that level we would have to think whether it would be better to employ people in other states. For the international companies, many of whom I have as clients, they don’t need to operate in Victoria if the taxes are too high.”
    Harry Hickling | 21 May 2021
    Managing Director Australian Performance Vehicles
    Australian Financial Review
    “We do think it is unfortunate that there is another tax on employment at this time particularly coming out of the pandemic. The levy will particularly impact labour-intensive businesses particularly those in retail and hospitality who have been hit very hard by the lockdown.”
    Craig Whatman | 20 May 2021
    Melbourne Partner Pitcher Partners
    The Age
    "We just try to keep taxing our way out of the problem but businesses are struggling as it is.”
    Gillian Franklin | 20 May 2021
    Owner The Heat Group
    The Age
    "Any sane Victorian medium or large business will now consider shifting their hiring interstate. And any foreign business looking to open an office locally will have yet another reason to choose NSW, Queensland or South Australia over Victoria."
    Adir Shiffman | 21 May 2021
    Chairman, Catapult Sports
    SmartCompany
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    Authorised by J. Clark for the Business Council of Australia of 120 Collins St, Melbourne.

    Support the campaign

    Support the campaign against payroll tax hikes by emailing your local member of parliament today.