Statement on Federal Government Leadership Change

“The Business Council of Australia (BCA) congratulates Mr Malcolm Turnbull on being elected as Prime Minister and welcomes the strong messages he has sent about building lasting prosperity through a more agile, innovative and creative nation,” BCA President Catherine Livingstone said.

“We welcome Mr Turnbull highlighting critical themes the business community have been raising for some time, such as the importance of a growth agenda fuelled by innovation,” Ms Livingstone said.

“With massive global forces of change upon us – from digital disruption, to ongoing economic volatility, to a shift in economic activity towards a rising Asia – now is an ideal time to re-energise Australia’s economic and social policy agenda.

“As the National Reform Summit recently concluded, growing the economy by lifting innovation and driving productivity should be the task of economic and social policy.

“The Business Council welcomes Mr Turnbull pledging a positive and inclusive leadership style which explains our national challenges and seeks to seize the opportunities they present, while respecting the intelligence of the community to embrace change for the better.

“The National Reform Summit made it very clear that the community will respond to a positive vision for the country, and that all options need to be left on the table so the community can see the trade-offs and be prepared to make the necessary adjustments over time.

“All Australians should welcome Mr Turnbull putting a stronger economy firmly at the heart of his plans, and rightly acknowledging the importance of sound policies which will lead to business confidence, which in turn will mean more jobs, and more opportunity for all Australians.

“For the Business Council, a stronger economy for all will require a 10-year plan including ambitious tax reform that supports growth and fairness, a new framework for a modern and competitive workplace relations system, and a pathway to a meaningful Budget surplus off the back of redesign of programs to reduce spending growth.

“It will also require a sustained focus on building a more innovative and future-skilled economy so that Australians can take on the global challenges before us, and lift productivity to ensure we maintain high living standards, and a social safety net into the future.

“As Mr Turnbull said, we cannot be defensive about the challenges in front of us and think we can be future-proofed. We must embrace the challenges of technology and global supply chains as opportunities to prosper, and successful businesses need to be at the heart of this.

“The Business Council looks forward to working with Mr Turnbull and his team to develop and implement the policies which will enable Australia to reach its full potential in our changing world.

“We also want to keep the momentum on the vitally important achievements of Mr Abbott and his team including the Industry Growth Centres, the Asian free trade agreements and the national deregulation agenda,” Ms Livingstone said.

For further information contact:
Scott Thompson, Director, Media and Public Affairs
Business Council of Australia
Telephone (03) 8664 2664 • Mobile 0403 241 128