Business Hunter is supporting calls for the state and federal governments to implement measures of support for business being impacted by the latest COVID restrictions across NSW. Whilst Federally funded business support will kick in for declared Sydney ‘hotspots’, this is not the case elsewhere in Greater Sydney or the regions at this time.
“Businesses are arguably now more vulnerable to COVID restriction induced down turns than they were through 2020 and early 2021. There is no JobKeeper or industrial relations flexibility measures and many were gearing up for a bumper school holidays, particularly with Dine and Discover in full swing” said Business Hunter CEO Bob Hawes.
“We need to strike quickly to provide cashflow support, stop confidence plummeting and the contagion that flows from it.
“The state government was sharp in providing assistance to businesses in the Northern Beaches following that outbreak and the same circumstances are with us again.
“Our sympathies go out to the businesses and communities in Greater Sydney, however it is important to make sure the parts of the state economy less restricted like the Hunter keep firing to reduce the prospect of a broader based downturn,” Mr Hawes said.
Whilst our region has again dodged the bullet and currently has no identified cases locally, there has been a huge ripple effect from the restrictions imposed in Greater Sydney. Many were caught by surprise by the regional restrictions. Some businesses are well and truly feeling the impact as they revert to operational measures that by their nature, restrict their trading capacity.
“Our community must also bear in mind the need to be vigilant given the vast number of businesses locally that do not have the option to allow staff to work from home. If COVID gets into these businesses and they are forced to close operations, the economic impacts will spread very quickly,” Mr Hawes noted
“Our community must follow the health orders and mask up, be diligent about QR code check ins, respect the needs to socially distance and let’s not play Russian roulette with this deadly virus.”