Assistant Treasurer, Kelly O'Dwyer, has announced Kate Carnell AO as the inaugural Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, today.
As an independent Ombudsman Carnell will act as a:
- Commonwealth advocate for small business and family enterprises;
- Concierge for dispute resolution service to allow businesses to resolve disputes without resorting to costly litigation; and
- Contributor to the development of small business Commonwealth laws and regulations.
Carnell has been the chief executive of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry since 2014, ran her own small business for 15 years before becoming ACT Chief Minister, and is the former CEO of beyondblue.
O'Dwyer's announcement said Carnell was "well-positioned to translate the voices of small Australian businesses and family enterprises into targeted policy messages for Government".
"Today's appointment is a major win for small business owners who will have access to advice and support, and an independent advocate to ensure the Government creates the right conditions for small businesses to grow," O'Dwyer said.
"The Government acknowledges small businesses make a substantial contribution to Australia's economy with over two million small businesses generating around a third of economic output."