The 2016 South Australian Budget finally backs SMEs to grow

08 July 2016

David Fechner, Partner, Corporate Finance, Tax & Advisory |

The State Budget’s $1.5 billion annual infrastructure spend over four years and the $10,000 incentive for small business hires is good news for the state’s 90,000 small businesses, and will back them to grow.

Speaking after the release of the 2016-17 Budget, BDO Partner David Fechner said the $10,000 incentive over two years for each new hire will be enough of a tipping point to take on another employee.

'In a flat economy the state government has substantially shifted its approach to small business and is finally looking at this sector to create jobs and growth' Mr Fechner said.

'The incentives announced today are good news for those business owners striving to diversify their offering and stay relevant to their customers amidst shrinking margins and attempts to deliver more with less resources.'

'In recent years business expectation has been low and our clients have indicated that they felt overlooked by our policy makers.'

'Today’s announcements, along with the extension of the existing payroll tax rebates for the next four years announced a few weeks ago and the stamp duty reductions announced last year, will give many the confidence to back their vision and grow.'

Specific incentives that will support innovation in the SME sector include: 

  • The creation of a $50 million SA Venture Capital Fund to help attract funds to small business
  • High speed internet access that is 10 times faster than the NBN for the CBD
  • SA Economic Investment Fund to be receive an extra $20 million over two years to attract new businesses to the state

'The $12 billion infrastructure spend planned for the next four years and beyond will also unlock further job opportunities and we hope to see as much of that spending flow to local businesses to create further value in our challenging economy,' Mr Fechner said.

'Certainly the significant increase in funding for the Industry Participation Advocate will continue their work to help the state’s small businesses deliver goods and services to the state government – but there is more to be done.

'There are still too many barriers for SMEs to access this spending. One of the issues is the government’s approach to risk - it’s safer to appoint a single contractor that is often based interstate, rather than deal with a number of smaller, locally based firms.'

'We’re walking away from additional value that can be generated locally for our economy, because of risk factors that the government could manage under a different framework.'

'A braver government would harness this value, rather than obsess over the risk.'

For more details about the SA State Budget please contact David Fechner.