A survey of the private capital sector has revealed that up to $7.5 billion in new investment activity has been put on ice as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Australian Investment Council has made the finding after surveying its member firms, noting the halt in activity during the last two months.
The council has looked towards Australia’s economic recovery after COVID-19, stating that it has found among the highest priority issues for its members are the opportunity to improve the efficiency of the tax system and a need to remove unnecessary and costly red tape for businesses.
Australian Investment Council chief executive Yasser El-Ansary said the nation has a significant chance to “reshape the structure of our economy for the next decade”.
“We know that the road to economic recovery from where we are now will be long, which is why we need to have a comprehensive action plan that combines short, medium and long-term strategies to regain the momentum that has been lost as a result of this downturn,” Mr El-Ansary said.
“Through sound public health management of the COVID-19 crisis, we are fortunate to be part of an exclusive group of first-mover nations to emerge from the pandemic and we must do everything possible to capitalise on our head start.
“Mechanisms to reskill our workforce, to alleviate the heavy cost of regulation and compliance and to build on the role of technology and innovation to support our economy will play an important role in creating a more dynamic Australian economy over the next decade.”
He added Australia should “roll out the red carpet for foreign investment” as well as work on attracting international talent.
“Now is not the time to be shy,” Mr El-Ansary said.
“Australia wants capital investment, and we need our highly skilled talent – the timing is right to harness this window of opportunity.”
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].