MEDIA RELEASE: 2020 Budget Gives Restaurants, Cafes & Caterers a Recipe for Recovery

Restaurant & Catering Australia (R&CA) today welcomed the Morrison Government’s 2020-21 Budget as a budget that was a recipe for recovery for more than 45,000 restaurants, cafes and caterers across the country.

R&CA CEO Wes Lambert said that initiatives announced today will save thousands of businesses from closure by stimulating demand from customers through personal tax cuts and giving businesses the right conditions to hire more workers and reduce losses borne as a result of COVID restrictions.

‘We know that demand to eat out is still high, so by putting $12.5 billion dollars back into the pockets of 11 million Australian taxpayers over the next 12 months, the government is doing its bit to stimulate demand across the Accommodation and Food Services Sector’, Mr Lambert said.

‘Combine that with $1.2 billion committed for a 50 percent wage subsidy for new apprentices and trainees under the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements program and the newly announced JobMaker Hiring Credit which will help thousands of hospitality businesses bring back the young employees that were lost due to the pandemic and there is a real recipe for recovery’.

‘As one of the single largest employers of young people the newly announced JobMaker Hiring Credit, which provides employers $200 per week for new employees aged between 16-29, and $100 per week for those aged between 30-35, will reduce the costs of hiring new workers and will help businesses create more jobs’, Mr Lambert said.

R&CA also welcomed new announcements relating to loss carry backs, full expensing and the expansion of small business tax incentives as an economic jump-start for businesses who have been struggling under mounting costs and debt throughout the pandemic.

‘For many hospitality businesses that were previously profitable, being able to access their losses now in the form of a cash refund will give an instantaneous cash-flow boost. The expanded small business incentives will also help those businesses that sit above the $10 million cut-off to access those incentives for the first time. As these businesses seek to recover, the introduction of temporary full expensing will further encourage businesses to invest and create jobs’.

R&CA also highlighted the importance of new funding to help small businesses and a simpler and cheaper insolvency process in cushioning the blow for many small business owners across the country.

‘We know that COVID will sadly cause many small hospitality business across Australia to close, so providing specialised funds to help these businesses grapple with a new digital world, help them deal with the rapid financial, emotional and operational changes brought about by the COVID crisis or help them wind up faster is an important and necessary problem that should be addressed’, Mr Lambert said.

Finally, the significant boost to Tourism Australia’s Budget to help stimulate international, domestic & regional tourists as well as business events will be vital in ensuring the broader accommodation and food services sector can land on its feet.

Mr Lambert said this budget had all the right ingredients to be a recipe for recovery for thousands of restaurants, cafes and caterers across Australia.