The Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA (CCIWA) welcomes both the significant increase in support that will be offered to WA businesses impacted by COVID restrictions, as well as the revised approach in managing COVID agreed by National Cabinet today.
Businesses directly affected by current restrictions will be eligible for $12,500 grants. In addition, nightclubs required to close will be eligible for $20,000 grants, and a support program for festivals and events will also be made available.
Through 2021 CCIWA has built a comprehensive evidence base of the impacts of restrictions on local businesses, through close engagement and rapid-fire surveys of our membership, and consistently called upon the State Government to recognise the depth of these impacts.
The State Government has substantially increased the quantum of support available to businesses, responding to concerns raised by CCIWA and the business community, particularly small and medium businesses.
CCIWA also welcomes the revised testing, tracing, isolation and quarantine requirements for close contacts of COVID cases agreed by National Cabinet today.
Western Australia is currently experiencing minimal community transmission, in contrast to the widespread transmission experienced elsewhere in our nation.
It is CCIWA’s understanding that the new 7 day isolation and close contact definitions will apply in WA from February 5 or sooner, should there be a significant outbreak where contact tracing and testing is put under acute strain.
It should be noted that the current 14-day isolation period has the potential to significantly disrupt the delivery of critical health and community services as well as business operations across many sectors of the economy. Small and family-owned businesses could particularly face forced closures.
CCIWA will be assessing WA business impacts as we transition to a new phase of managing COVID in our State and work with the Federal and State Governments to ensure the impacts are understood and mitigated.