Opposition to carbon tax grows
NORTHERN Rivers businesses are “overwhelmingly” opposed to the government's carbon tax, according to an exclusive poll commissioned by the Northern Star.
The poll of more than 300 businesses after the details of the tax were released two weeks ago revealed opposition had swelled to 72% from 64% in April.
“Northern Rivers business people are not buying Prime Minister Julia Gillard's sell on the carbon tax, with an overwhelming majority believing it will have a negative impact,” said Griffith University's Pro Vice Chancellor (Business) professor Michael Powell, who conducted the survey.
Asked to nominate the biggest negative influences for businesses in the region, respondents named the Federal Government, carbon tax and the high Aussie dollar.
Gary Burridge, general manager of Casino Meatworks, which is the largest employer in the region, said the new tax would significantly add to all businesses' operational costs.
“We have great concerns about the carbon tax and think it will affect our business quite significantly,” he said.
“We are a big user of electricity and a trade-exposed industry, and there are no offsets for our business.”
Page MP Janelle Saffin put the jump in opposition down to the Coalition's “fear campaign”.
“It's a challenge because this is a major economic reform that's dealing with an environmental problem, so it's not easy to sell,” she said.