Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010
Australia’s peak body for small business advice is puzzled by the South Australian Labor Government’s decision to stop funding frontline support for the state’s many small business owners, says Business Enterprise Centres Australia (BECA).

In its state budget handed down last week, the Rann Government cut almost $100 million from the Department of Trade and Economic Development, closing Business Enterprise Centres, and scrapping Small Business Month, the Small Business Helpline, and the SA Young Entrepreneur Scheme.

“This sends very confusing messages to the marketplace because only last month the Minister for Industry, Trade and Small Business, Tom Koutsantonis, was quoted bemoaning the fact that South Australia can get stuck in its ways and risk not creating a new generation of iconic businesses, ‘the new Coopers … Balfours … Haighs’,” notes BECA chair, David Baumgarten.

“And yet these iconic businesses all began as small, entrepreneurial, family concerns, the very businesses the budget cuts will target by choking off their supply of timely business advice and training support.

“From the national perspective of our 135-strong network of business enterprise centres, we are urging the Premier, Mike Rann, to step in and rescue his state from taking a retrograde step and damaging the critical support infrastructure that keeps 96 percent of his state’s businesses running.

“We understand the temptation and lure of big ticket, headline-friendly ventures such as large industry parks, but what the economy actually needs is serious attention to the daily decision-making and ‘grind’ required to keep tens of thousands of families and voters in viable work.

“We are certain that the government has enough gumption to make right decisions and to correct oversights and therefore call upon the Rann Government to restore funding to business enterprise centres so as not to throw the baby out with the bathwater,” he says.


Contact Profile

Business Enterprise Centres Australia

Business Enterprise Centres operate throughout all states and territories in Australia endeavouring to work with and on behalf of the micro and small business sectors. 

BEC Australia Charter: -
BEC Australia is a not-for-profit organisation whose primary role is to support and grow the national network of Business Enterprise Centres and provide representation on behalf of its members to key stakeholders.

BEC Australia Vision:-
A nationwide network of Business Enterprise Centres that are recognised as the first and best point of contact for small business operators seeking quality business information, advice and guidance.

David Baumgarten
P: 0419 206 110


SA State Budget, Mike Rann, Small Business, BEC Australia, Business Enterprise Centres



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