REGULATION, ESPECIALLY compliance, are among the burdens affecting the progress of the small business market in NSW and could be found in other states.
The “burdens” such as regulations on small businesses, work health and safety requirements and global economic pressure are some of the challenges facing small business operators in NSW, the state’s first Small Business Commissioner Yasmin King announced yesterday.
This followed her meetings with hundreds of small business operators across the state.
Ms King recently made her inaugural NSW regional listening tour which was titled Giving Small Business a Big Say and reported on the challenges small businesses face as well as their priorities for the future.
The tour was sponsored by the NSW Business Chamber and enabled Ms King to better identify the biggest issues affecting small business operators in NSW as well as the role of the NSW Government in assisting and promoting the growth of the small business sector.
Ms King’s 28 stop tour travelled from metropolitan Sydney to the Northern Rivers, Mid North Coast, Murray Riverina, Central West, Central Coast, and finished up in the Hunter.
“NSW has some of Australia’s most dedicated and dynamic small business operators and it was important that I visit their turf to meet with them and get a better understanding of the variety of issues affecting small businesses in different parts of the state,” she said.
Minister for Small Business, Katrina Hodgkinson, has congratulated Ms King on the success of the listening tour.
“As Minister for Small Business, I want to ensure that small business operators have access to support, relevant and practical information and an independent advocate who will not only be a touchstone but someone who will fight for their rights,” she said.
Ms King said the listening tour has been a great chance to meet with small business owners across the state and feedback from these meetings would assist her to best represent their needs in the corridors of government.
The small business operators’ main problems list began with regulatory burdens (compliance, often with multiple agencies); government tendering and procurement processes – relating to small, local providers, and work, health and safety requirements – premiums, inspections, audits, appeal processes.
Other difficulties seen were Fair Work Australia “burdensome and with an advisory function which is not sufficiently practical to assist small businesses”; local government – regulation and planning decision making, fees and charges, and unfair market practices – retail sector, landlord and commercial issues.