Australia’s big employers have become the only segment of the private economy to boost its overall number of employees last financial year, new statistics show.
The latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show large businesses created 80,000 jobs in net terms, while small and medium businesses lost 14,000 jobs.
Large businesses have employed 540,000 more people over the seven years to June 2016, accounting for 62 per cent of total net private sector jobs created.
Business Council chief executive Jennifer Westacott said: “This new data underscores the threat to jobs if parliament refuses to pass the Enterprise Tax Plan, which is the only realistic proposal to protect Australians’ livelihoods and living standards into the future.
“Now, more than ever, Australia needs every business possible to keep creating jobs.
“Developing strong, large businesses is the best chance we have of delivering big employment gains and preserving the corporate tax base that underpins essential public services.
“We can’t expect to thrive in the Asian century with a two-tiered company tax system that penalises large businesses – the only businesses with the scale to access huge export markets. Imposing higher taxes on larger companies also discourages small businesses from expanding.
“Australia currently has some of the highest company taxes in the world, repelling investment that would otherwise flow into Australian companies and on to workers through better jobs with higher wages.
“Australia’s reliance on company tax is the second-highest among OECD economies, only after Norway. Company tax collections are expected to total $70 billion this year.
“Australian businesses are being held back by an uncompetitive 30 per cent company tax rate, which is driving potential investors to other countries where they can get a higher return.
“It’s time for parliament to pass the remaining tranche of the Enterprise Tax Plan and give working Australians the best chance of a better job with a higher wage.”