A report released by the Insurance Council of Australia shows that less than two thirds of small and medium-sized businesses are adequately insured.

“The report identified that 26% of SMEs do not have any form of general insurance and 6% of those businesses who purchased insurance said that they were inadequately covered,” Shadow Minister for Small Business Don Page said.

The report states ‘a small business in New South Wales and Victoria suffers under the weight of a triple burden of taxation – fire services levies, the GST and State stamp duties. Together, State taxes can add up to 60% to the cost of an SMEs insurance premium.’

“80% of respondents who said they were inadequately insured said that the cost of insurance was the major barrier to purchasing,” Mr Page said.

“Excessive taxation is causing small and medium-sized businesses to carry the burden of risk themselves.
 
“We are heading into very uncertain economic times and businesses need to have the security of insurance, not only for their own protection but for the protection of their employees and families.

“The State Labor Government must immediately reduce the imposition of high taxation on insurance premiums to encourage a higher level of coverage in small and medium-sized businesses.

“This report shows that it is the overall cost of insurance premiums that is deterring businesses from purchasing insurance.

“The NSW State Labor Government needs to get over its addiction to stamp duty and transaction taxes so that NSW businesses can access greater security in the uncertain times ahead.”