Tim PALLAS (Werribee – Treasurer, Minister for Industrial Relations, Minister for Economic Growth) (14:40): I am pleased to advise the house of the current situation in business creation and investment in the state of Victoria. You could almost believe, if you listened to the ill-informed commentary that seems to pervade those sides of this chamber, that business was going backwards. Nothing could be further from the truth. In Victoria we lead the nation in business investment growth. This was 13 per cent in Victoria last year, compared to 6 per cent for the rest of the nation. There were more startups in this state than in any other location, with 3400 of them compared to when we started in 2017 with the advent of LaunchVic. The most recent ABS stats demonstrate that we have 90,000 more businesses in Victoria now than we had at the start of 2021. That is more businesses created than in any other state. Little wonder, then, that this state has created more jobs than any other state since September 2020.


We have cut the payroll tax rate for regional businesses to one-quarter of the metro rate. We have undertaken landmark reform to abolish stamp duty on commercial and industrial property, and we are raising the payroll tax free threshold to $1 million so that 6000 small businesses no longer have to pay a cent of payroll tax, which, incidentally, those opposite voted against. The truth is that this government has put in place the conditions to ensure that 170,000 more businesses in this state can grow and we can ensure that those opposite – 170,000 businesses created by this government, but in their four years in government 11,000 businesses – (Time expired)