LNP Candidate for Bowman, Henry Pike, has revealed the local scale of the Morrison Government’s JobKeeper Payment scheme for businesses significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
New data has disclosed that, within the Redlands, JobKeeper subsidy payments were paid to 5,810 small businesses employing 25,221 locals.
“JobKeeper was one of the most successful economic support programs in Australia’s history and it has had a very real positive impact on Redland households,” Mr Pike said.
“The payments were an absolute lifeline for those small businesses that were hit hard and continue to struggle due to the ongoing pandemic.”
“Many local businesses have told me that this program was more than just a wage subsidy. It kept them afloat as well as their suppliers, clients and customers.”
Across Australia more than 3.8 million people and one million businesses directly benefited.
The Commonwealth Treasury estimates that JobKeeper provided a $100bn boost to economic activity, or 5 per cent of GDP, in 2020-21 alone.
Australia’s economy contracted by just 2.5 per cent in 2020. This compared with 5 per cent in Japan and Canada and 10 per cent in Britain. By the end of June this year, Australia’s economy had recovered faster and stronger than any advanced economy in the world.
Mr Pike has taken aim at Labor criticism of the program, and moves to retrospectively change the rules to name recipients and seek repayments from those who had better than expected turnover.
“Ninety-nine per cent of the businesses that did not experience the anticipated fall in turnover were small businesses, with an average of just four employees,” Mr Pike said.
“These payments were designed to keep the economy from dropping into a deep recession and to keep people in jobs. It achieved both of these aims.”
“Retrospective penny-pinching is the last thing Redland businesses need as they now focus on getting back to normal operations.”
“JobKeeper saved Redland jobs and supported the recovery of our local economy.”