The National Retail Association (NRA) has welcomed a plan to provide small businesses with the digital training tools that could help them from going under.

Under draft Federal legislation, small Australian businesses will qualify for tax incentives to train employees in technology skills until June 30, 2024.

“It’s good to see that the NRA is on the same page as the Albanese Labor Government about tackling workforce and training issues at the SME level,’’ NRA CEO Dominique Lamb said.

“This announcement will help solve a significant part of our labour shortage crisis and create development and growth opportunities for small businesses during a time of turmoil”.

Ms Lamb said the $1.5 billion proposed under the Technology Investment Boost and the Skills and Training Boost is the productivity leg up that small to medium-sized businesses have needed for a long time.

“If this becomes a reality, small businesses will be able to breathe easier and go head-to-head with bigger businesses in the market,’’ she said.

Ms Lamb said nearly one in five small businesses have next to no access to digital technology skills and know how.

“This legislation will have a direct impact on communities where small businesses are the driving force of the local economy, leading to better growth and development in regional economies,’’ Ms Lamb said.

“Small businesses find themselves right on the edge at the moment. They don’t want to close shop and we don’t them to close shop. Giving small business access to the same digital capabilities that larger businesses have levels the playing field somewhat.

“We hope the Government doesn’t take too long to implement this policy given that there are a number of SMEs teetering on the edge right now. We don’t want to see any small businesses miss out the opportunity and hope this incentive reaches all critically vulnerable SMEs before they go out of business,” she said.

The National Retail Association is the voice of modern retail, representing more than 60,000 stores across Australia.  It has been serving businesses in the retail and fast-food sectors for close to 100 years.

For more information contact the NRA’s media unit on 0467 792 013 or 07 3221 9222.