The re-election of the Morrison Government is being hailed as welcome news for the retail sector, who last week flagged concerns over Labor’s push to restore penalty rates.
The retail industry peak on Monday praised the return of the Coalition government, saying the news was “warmly welcomed” by the retail sector.
The Morrison Government, who appears on track for a majority government with Tuesday’s polls showing 75 seats for the Coalition, and three ‘close’ seats, will give retailers much-needed stability, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) said.
Russel Zimmerman, executive director of the ARA applauded the election outcome, saying that the sector will continue to work with the government on the key issues affecting retailers.
“On behalf of Australia’s $320bn retail sector, we’d like to offer our warmest congratulations to the Prime Minister and his team on their victory in a hard-fought contest at Saturday’s federal election,” Mr Zimmerman said.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the government on a raft of issues affecting our members,” he added.
Mr Zimmerman called out Labor’s pledge to reverse penalty rate cuts – reaffirming the peak’s commitment to pushback against such a move.
“The independent umpire – the Fair Work Commission, set up by Labor – makes evidence-based determinations regarding issues such as penalty rates, and its independence must be respected,” Mr Zimmerman said.
“We hope the election result puts an end to attempts to interfere politically with bodies such as the FWC.”
Just last week retailers flagged concerns about Labor’s ambitions to reform the industrial relations sector, particularly as tough market conditions continue to plague retailers, with retail growth in 2017-18 being the lowest on record.
“Governments don’t determine trade or turnover, but what they administer dictates the conditions with which our retail member businesses must work to be profitable, to make a living, and create jobs,” Mr Zimmerman said.
“The Morrison government has signalled a commonsense approach to workplace relations, business energy costs, lower taxes, cutting red tape, and taking a rational view on climate change, and we welcome its re-election to office,” Mr Zimmerman concluded.