Bob Kucera

Bob Kucera

Former Minister for Disability Services; Sport and Recreation; Citizenship and Multicultural Interests; Seniors

    Hockey refuses to acknowledge truth of Trade Practices Act review

    28/07/2004 6:32 PM

    Small Business Minister Bob Kucera today accused his Federal counterpart, Joe Hockey, of using his power to prevent attention being drawn to the fact his Government had backed down on reforms to protect small business.

    “Mr Hockey is clearly embarrassed by the Federal Government’s back-down on protection for small business from predatory pricing and unconscionable conduct by larger businesses,” Mr Kucera said.

    He said Mr Hockey had used his power of veto at the Small Business Ministerial Council in Hobart to stop the council acknowledging there was a difference between the recommendations from the Senate Economic Committee’s review of the Trade Practices Act that produced a majority report from the Opposition and a minority report from the Government’s own senators.

    “He did everything in his power to prevent the council from drawing attention to the fact that the Federal Government has backed away from reforms that would help small business,” Mr Kucera said.

    “Mr Hockey does not want people to know the truth about his Government’s rejection of reforms recommended by its own senators that would see more protection for small business against big business exercising its market muscle.

    “What Mr Hockey’s veto today shows is that he will do anything to hide the fact that not only has the Federal Government ignored its own senators’ report but it has sold out the interests of small business to its mates at the big end of town.”

    Mr Kucera said it was clear Joe Hockey thought of himself as the minister for the Business Council of Australia, rather than the minister looking after the jobs generation centre of small business.

    The Western Australian Government would continue to push hard for the adoption of measures that further protected small business by strengthening the Trade Practices Act.

    Minister's office: 9213 7000