Western Australia’s unemployment rate has dropped to 6.0 per cent in July.
This is a welcome fall since March when WA’s unemployment rate spiked to 6.8 per cent – the highest rate in the nation and the highest in the State in 16 years.
A lower unemployment rate figure today shows that slow progress in being made and West Australians are finding their way back in to work, although 85,500 people remain out of work and 133,000 are underemployed and looking for additional hours.
For WA to fire on all cylinders again, with jobs being created for all those looking for work and wage growth returning, business investment must be supported.
If our Federal politicians want to boost investment across the country, create jobs and increase wages over time they should support the reduction in Australia’s company tax rate to make us more competitive on the world stage.
It has been almost two decades since Australia changed its top company tax rate to 30 per cent. At the time the OECD average tax rate was 33.5 per cent but this has since fallen to 21.9 per cent which now makes Australia, and WA, uncompetitive.
WA is highly dependent on investment in its economy. The proposed reduction to a rate of 25 per cent is estimated to permanently grow the Australian economy by $17 billion a year, helping to boost prosperity and create jobs at a time of need.
A recent business survey conducted by CCI revealed that West Australian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are overwhelmingly crying out for a more competitive tax rate for larger businesses to boost our State’s struggling economy.
Two out of three (68%) SMEs believe cutting the company tax rate would benefit the WA economy, over half (58%) believe it would result in larger businesses taking on more workers and one-third (32%) would hire more workers themselves and increase wages (31%).
CCI is calling on all Senators to pass the Government’s company tax cuts in its current form. If we want to attract global investment we must be competitive. If we fail to get this right, we risk our prosperity.
*All comments are attributable to CCI Chief Economist Rick Newnham.