Car Dealers Hope Stimulus Package Breathes Life Into the Industry

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SYDNEY, Australia – Car dealers hope the stimulus package worth around $17.6 billion from the federal government can breathe life into the industry.

Meanwhile, Mike Henry, CEO of BHP, said that they would push through with the company’s previous plans to hire new apprentices, which will open 1000 new job opportunities.

Ryan Stokes, CEO of Seven Group Holdings, told during an interview that the federal stimulus package would offer a boost to the infrastructure, energy, and the mining sectors. It will provide massive relief, especially right now that they are experiencing the slowdown, he said.

Ross McEwen, CEO of National Australia Banks, also pushed small businesses to start speaking to banks and other lenders regarding the extension, rescheduling or restructuring their loans as needed.

A lot of CEOs from various sectors acknowledge the stimulus package on Thursday as extremely useful in helping them manage their business processes. That includes their cash flow, boost investment, and pay wages to help mitigate the slowdown in the industry due to the spreading coronavirus.

However, not everyone believes that the stimulus from the federal government can offer long-term relief for businesses. George Fraziz, CEO of the Bank of Queensland, among other business leaders, extends warning that the temporary measures from the government way need some extension. He also urged the federal to contemplate on giving many long-term reforms during the forthcoming May budget.

Meanwhile, the BHP CEO called the response from the federal government as calm and orderly during an incredibly stressful time. The wage subsidies that the BHP can get from the stimulus from the government will help support their plans to hire around 1000 new workers and apprentices annually for the next five years.

Mr. Henry also said in an interview that the Australian economy would face a lot of challenges in the weeks and months ahead. The resolve of all Australian people will undergo the same fate as well, he added.

The BHP CEO also welcomes the productive bipartisanship of the Labor Department. He further stated that the efforts to help stimulate the country’s economy, as well as support the small businesses in the country is the right things to do. Mr. Henry also commends the moves to give a dependable safety net, especially to the vulnerable sectors in the community during this trying time.

He added that with the economy on the down-low right now, it is vital that the country and the Parliament will join forces and work together. Mr. Henry said that there should be a much quicker response to what the country is facing at the moment.

Meanwhile, Mr. Stokes stated that the exposure of Seven Group Holdings to the energy, infrastructure, and mining should benefit from the stimulus package from the government. That includes the company’s Coates Hires Division, mining machinery arm at WesTract and its share in the Beach Energy.

Mr. Stokes said that they are delighted with the efforts of the federal government to step up in its group of initiatives to help support and protect the economy. That also includes the government’s ways to boost businesses to help stave the slowdown in the industry during this quarter.

He added that the government’s stimulus package could go a long way in terms of aiding in business investment boosts in training and equipment, jobs, and Australian families.

However, the 2500 new auto dealers in the country are hoping that businesses will use the expanded asset from the government to purchase new vehicles. The sector is already experiencing a further slump in new car sales, which now continues to its 23rd consecutive month.

James Voortman, the chief executive of the Australian Automotive Dealers Association, stated that the industry is wishful that the stimulus package can help breathe much-needed life into the industry that is barely hanging by a thread at the moment.

Meanwhile, more action from the federal government may be necessary, according to several business leaders during this week’s Australian Financial Revie Business Summit.

Mr. Frazis of Bank of Queensland said on Thursday that the stimulus package from the federal is a string beginning response. He expects close monitoring towards the stimulus as well as any extra support from the government when needed.

Peter King, the acting CEO of Westpac, also called the initiative as comprehensive and would play a vital part in keeping Australian people employed, at least in the next couple of months. He stated that it would also provide the much-needed foundation for the economy to get a rebound late in 2020.

Marnie Baker, CEO of Adelaide Bank and Bendigo, stated that they are offering support packages for consumers, small businesses, and agribusiness customers affected by COVID-19.

Also, Mr. Ewen of NAB encouraged businesses and consumers gravely affected by the effects of the virus to contact the bank to discuss restructuring, extension, or deferral of their loans. He said that NAB continues its lending operation through the GFC, and they will continue to do so now.

Greg Ellis, CEO of MYOB, stated that the stimulus would go a long way in helping business owners in cash flow management and keep their workers. The government’s initiative could provide sliding-scale cash loans, deductions on accelerated depreciation, wage subsidies for apprentices and trainees, and instant asset write-off boost.

Ed McManus, Deliveroo Australia CEO, also commented that the restaurant industry would face continuous negativity because of the spreading virus. He said that the sector would be the ultimate winner of the government’s initiative.

Mr. McManus said that the support they will receive is very welcome, which includes a $25,000 cash grants and a 50% wage subsidy available for their eligible Australian employers of around 117,000 trainees. He said that the help from the government would in new equipment investments, ongoing employment, and economic downturn mitigation efforts of the restaurant sector.

Jennifer Westacott, chief executive of Business Council Australia, also said that the package would help in economic stabilization and employment support. However, she points out that the May budget in the coming months will give the country a chance to ensure a more permanent recovery is in place.

Meanwhile, she said that despite the stimulus package, the biggest companies in Australia would start getting vulnerable, the longer the spreading virus continues.

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