SMEs reveal initiatives that would sway their vote in the 2013 election

New research by MYOB reveals policies and initiatives that would turn SME election votes towards the proposing party in the upcoming Federal election.

The study reveals more than half of Australia’s SMEs are dissatisfied with the government’s support for their businesses, with only one in seven satisfied.

Respondents in the agribusiness, forestry and fishing sector were the industry groups that were most dissatisfied with Federal Government support (66 percent), followed by those in finance and insurance (62 percent) and transport, postal and warehousing (56 percent).

Nearly three fifths of Queenslanders were also dissatisfied with the Federal Government’s support in helping their small businesses succeed.

Making business life easier by alleviating the compliance burden, abolishing the carbon tax and investing further in infrastructure were among the top initiatives that would turn SME election votes towards the proposing party.

“Independent business owners and managers continue to call for tax reform, deregulation and the reduction of red tape,” said MYOB CEO Tim Reed.

“The significant level of paperwork and compliance required by the government is a common pain point, hence Victoria recently appointing its own red tape commissioner. Perhaps this should be expanded to a national posting. More work must be done to help SMEs simplify their regulatory commitments.”

“GST and BAS simplification tops the list of initiatives that could turn an election on its head, closely followed by the abolishment of the carbon tax,” he continued.

“With fuel prices noted by SMEs as their top pressure point, it’s no wonder 63 percent said they would vote for the party that proposed more investment in city transport infrastructure. The Federal Government has plenty of fodder for policy consideration in the run up to the election this year.”

The top 10 policies and initiatives that would turn the votes of business operators this election include:

1. Policies that significantly simplify the GST/BAS reporting process (65 percent)

2. The abolition of the carbon tax (63 percent)

3. More Federal Government investment in transport infrastructure in our major states and cities (61 percent)

4. A reduction in payroll tax (57 percent)

5. Increased Federal Government funding for skills, training and apprenticeship programs (57 percent)

6. Increased Government funding for innovation, research and development by Australian businesses (53 percent)

7. Waiving any penalty interest charges on late tax payments for start-up businesses in their first two years of operation (53 percent)

8. Providing free Government-funded training to all small businesses on how to use the internet to enhance and grow their business (51 percent)

9. The creation of a single flat tax for personal tax and company tax (49 percent)

10. Further cutting Government expenditure to return to surplus faster (42 percent)