Federal parliament needs to work with the government to pursue measures that will boost innovation and make industry more competitive in to counter strong economic headwinds, according Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott.
Westacott said that “all stops” must be put out to accelerate Australia’s rate of growth and build a more resilient and innovative economy that provides more opportunities for job creation and wage boosts.
“[W]e need to come to terms with the fact that Australia’s economy is slowing and productivity, which is the key driver of wages growth, is going backwards,” Westacott said.
Current figures show that the national growth rate is just 1.8 per cent, which Westacott said was unable to deliver the new jobs and higher wages Australians need.
“Australia’s slow economic growth leaves us exposed to gathering economic headwinds. Only with a plan for a more competitive and productive economy can we provide Australians with a buffer against an unpredictable global economy,” she said.
“A slowing economy isn’t just about numbers on a spreadsheet. Weak economies are those that see people losing their jobs, see regional towns struggle to stay afloat and see young people missing out on the opportunities they deserve.”
Westacott called on parliament to pass measures that “supercharge” business investment and lead to more money circulating around the economy.
“Politicians, business and the community must act together to deliver the world’s best skills system, to attract the investment Australians need and give Australian workers a modern workplace relations scheme,” she said.
“Australians deserve a thriving economy and access to the new opportunities they want for themselves and their families. Only a thriving business sector can deliver a stronger Australia.”