The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Bruce Billson has welcomed the banks’ ongoing efforts to support small businesses impacted by COVID-19 lockdowns.
The Australian Banking Association says banks will defer loan repayments for small businesses affected by lockdowns throughout Australia for three months.
“This is a positive initiative that will help many struggling small businesses stay afloat in these challenging times,” Mr Billson says.
“The banks’ commitment to support small businesses through this period is highly valued and is the kind of a key support element that could be incorporated into an agreed predictable and known national framework of support.
“Such a framework, involving both Government and private sector elements, step up as COVID-inspired economic constraints and introduced, up-levelled or extended that small and family businesses can count on when seeking to navigate these challenging and uncertain times
“I would encourage all small businesses owners who are experiencing financial difficulties to call their banks now to make the necessary arrangements.
“Home loan support, including deferrals on a month-by-month basis, is also available to small business customers.
“Banks are promising to support small businesses if they need it - so long as the loan is in good standing with repayments up-to-date or there’s a payment program in place.
“It’s encouraging to see our banks taking this proactive approach and leading by example.
“This consistency from the banks will help small businesses navigate and adapt to periods of uncertainty such as this.”