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Greens promote small businesses

Media Release
Bob Brown 27 Jul 2010

Australian Greens Leader Senator Bob Brown today launched a suite of measures to assist small businesses.

The launch with ACT Greens Senate candidate Lin Hatfield-Dodds was at a restaurant in suburban Canberra.

Senator Brown said that small businesses were the power-house of employment in Australia, providing jobs for 5 million people.

Senator Brown is advocating a change to banking laws to help small businesses and flagged new opportunities in the energy efficiency and renewable energy industry.

"Our measures will help small business access credit, following the downturn in the global financial markets and promote new clean energy opportunities.

The Greens initiatives include:
• Legislation to require lenders to offer small business 'fixed interest gap loans' with an interest rate set at a negotiated margin above the lender's cost of funds.
• Capped exit fees on loans to small business at the cost to the lender of the early termination.
• Support for the introduction of portable bank accounts to promote competition.
• Boosting the renewable energy efficiency with a national gross feed-in tariff to create new opportunities in the solar photovoltaic sector.
• An energy efficiency target that will create demand for energy efficiency certificates to be met by new small businesses conducting energy efficiency audits and upgrades in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors.
"The Greens have a strong record in the Senate of supporting small business across a range of issues including anti-competitive pricing and superannuation," said Senator Brown.

"The Greens will be a voice for small business in the Australian Senate in the face of the powerful lobby of large corporations and the mining industry.

Media contact Erin Farley 0438 376 082

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