Queensland businesses are now seeing the positive effects of a stronger state economy according to today’s Westpac Group CCIQ Pulse Survey of Business Conditions, Treasurer Tim Nicholls said.
Mr Nicholls said the Newman Government’s disciplined efforts to turn Queensland’s economy around had seen general business conditions and sales revenue in Queensland rise to their highest levels in a year during the December quarter.
“The Westpac Group CCIQ survey shows the high levels of confidence experienced in Queensland last year are now converting into tangible improvements in trading conditions and other business indicators,” Mr Nicholls said.
“Business confidence remains at near record levels, at 58.8 points in Queensland, eight percentage points higher than in the final days of the former Labor Government.
“Importantly, almost 75 per cent of business respondents are also expecting continued or stronger profitability levels into 2014.”
Mr Nicholls said the survey showed Queensland businesses were demanding the Federal Opposition stop blocking even further growth, and accept the Abbott Government’s mandate to deliver upon their election commitments of abolishing the crippling carbon and mining taxes.
“The Newman Government committed to reducing the burden on business and that’s what we’ve done,” he said.
“Labor’s $35 a tonne waste tax is gone and we have 440 red tape reduction strategies already completed or underway.
“We’re streamlining our development processes and reducing the time taken for approvals.
“Labor spent its time creating an $80 billion black cloud of of debt and deficit, trashing confidence in the process. We are fulfilling our promise to get the economy back on track and business is a major part of that.”
CCIQ general manager Nick Beherns said from a historical perspective business confidence in Queensland remained at near peak levels.
“Most importantly, general business conditions rose above 50 percentage points for the first time since December 2012 to sit at 52.4, while sales revenue also jumped above 50 points for the first time since June 2012,” Mr Beherns said.
Mr Nicholls said the survey came on the back of ABS data released this week which showed the Queensland construction sector was also surging ahead, with trend dwelling approvals now at their highest level in six years.
“Additionally the National Australia Bank’s Business Conditions Index, also released today confirms business confidence is surging ahead in Queensland, with seasonally adjusted figures rising to 12 points in December 2013, three points higher than the September quarter results,” he said.
“The Government’s pro-growth approach is delivering results for the state’s economy, with ABS data also highlighting three-quarters of all the jobs created in Australia in the year to December were created in Queensland.
“The Newman Government has worked in a disciplined and measured way to reduce debt, but the reality is the former Labor Government’s debt legacy is shackling our ability to fund new services and infrastructure.
“We are taking a careful and planned approach to dealing with that debt so that we can secure Queensland’s financial future.”