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Pilot Light Mode: Business reacts to Melbourne’s shutdown

BROOKE CORTE

Victoria’s unprecedented lockdown restrictions will shut down most of Melbourne’s retail shops, close almost every professional service office, and greatly curtail manufacturing and construction for the next six weeks.

More than 250,000 additional workers could lose their jobs.

Australian Retailers Association CEO Paul Zahra says today’s decision will have a devastating impact on Victorian businesses.

The building and construction industry has not been spared. Residential builds will be capped at five workers – including foreman – for six weeks. Simonds Homes CEO Kelvin Ryan says the sector can carry on, albeit under difficult circumstances.

Victoria’s abattoirs and meatworks will be force to operate at two-thirds capacity for the next six weeks. Australian Meat Industry Council CEO Patrick Hutchinson says the move will impact supply chains and the availability of meat products.

The new federal pandemic leave payment will ensure workers without access to sick leave do not attend work when they should be self-isolating. COSBOA President Peter Strong says the scheme is ‘fantastic news’ for small business owners.

BROOKE CORTE
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