9 ways government can save your virus-hit business
GOVERNMENTS around Australia are rolling out assistance packages for businesses of all sizes battling to keep their doors open amid the worsening coronavirus outbreak.
Here are the major lifelines being offered by the Queensland and Federal governments.
INTEREST FREE LOANS
A $500 million loan facility for businesses, which is interest-free for the first 12 months, is available to help Queensland businesses continue to operate. The Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority will start approving the loans as soon as possible.
The payroll tax deferral has now been extended to all businesses. Businesses don't need to lodge or pay payroll tax returns before 31 July 2020. The Office of State Revenue will work with affected businesses to create repayment plans for the deferred tax liabilities.
The State Government has more than 50 mentors ready to help impacted Queensland small businesses. They are able to provide tailored support including financial mentoring and business planning.
Workshops run by the State Government will provide small business with practical tools and skills to build business resilience. It also will allow business people to connect and network with other firms facing similar issues. The workshops will be delivered in several locations around the state.
Market diversification and resilience grants are available for Queensland agriculture, food and fishing exporters and their critical supply chain partners, as well as industry organisations working with exporters.
CASH FLOW ASSISTANCE
The Federal Government is helping small and medium businesses with aggregated annual turnover under $50 million to cover the costs of wages and salaries equal to 50 per cent of PAYG withheld for businesses that withhold tax, with a minimum of $2,000 and a maximum of $25,000 over six months. Businesses that pay salary and wages but are not required to withhold tax will also receive the minimum payment of $2,000. This will be a tax free payment, benefiting around 690,000 businesses employing 7.8 million people.
APPRENTICES AND TRAINEES
The Federal Government is offering a wage subsidy of 50 per cent of the apprentice's or trainee's wage for nine months. The subsidy of up to a maximum of $21,000, will be available to businesses employing fewer than 20 full-time employees who retain an apprentice or trainee, or, where a small business is not able to retain an apprentice, the subsidy will be available to a new employer. This will support up to 70,000 small businesses employing around 117,000 apprentices.
INSTANT ASSET WRITE OFFS
The threshold for instant asset writes offs will be lifted to $150,000 from $30,000 and expanded to businesses with aggregated annual turnover of less than $500 million, up from $50 million, until 30 June 2020.
The Federal Government is offering businesses a 15 month investment incentive to support their business, by accelerating depreciation deductions. This includes a deduction of 50 per cent of the cost of an asset, with existing depreciation applying to the balance of the asset's cost. It is available to businesses with aggregated turnover below $500 million, purchasing certain new assets.