Budget a ‘welcome fillip’ for retailers

Tax cuts a boost for spending.

Retail has enjoyed a boon 24 hours following key announcements in the Federal Budget, along with ABS figures showing that the sector finally broke free of its shackles in February.

National Retail Association (NRA) CEO Dominique Lamb said the news regarding both the budget and February sales results serve as welcome relief for retailers.

“The 2019 Budget takes keys steps towards helping Australia’s retail sector, which has so far experienced a slow start to the year,” Lamb said.

The tax cuts for low and middle-income earners means ordinary Australians will now have more money in their hip pocket to spend. The need to restore consumer confidence was vital and these tax breaks will go a long way to achieving that, she said.

Australian Retailers’ Association (ARA) executive director, Russell Zimmerman, said the budget delivered a welcome fillip for a sector that is operating in challenging conditions marked by stagnant wages, high energy costs, and soft consumer confidence.

“Whilst we’d like to see more detail in some areas, the ARA believes this is a positive budget for retailing in Australia that will help its members and deliver some much-needed relief in terms of their trading conditions,” he said.

The announcement that instant write-off provisions would be increased from $25,000 per purchase to $30,000, and expanded to cover every asset acquisition by businesses turning over up to $50 million per annum, would further assist retail enterprises at a time of difficult trading conditions.

He said that the $525 million allocated to skills development that included funding for 80,000 new apprenticeships, with incentive payments of $8,000 for employers per placement and a further $2,000 for apprentices, would help address the retail sector’s training and development needs.

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