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The Australian government is campaigning again for the small business vote. The federal Small Buiness Minister is calling for responses to a variation of the ACCC only this time dedicated to small business but still without any mention of franchising or real teeth.
A National Information and Referral Service – comprising a telephone hotline and website directing small businesses to other services in their state or territory.
A National Dispute Resolution Service – would also provide referrals and information, but offer low-cost mediation where no appropriate, low-cost service exists.
National Small Business Tribunal – would deal specifically with small business disputes, and would be backed by Commonwealth legislation. It could be based in a capital city and possibly use existing federal court facilities.
A Small Business Advocate: would independently represent the interests of the small business community to government. SMH
Meanwhile Jo Gash MP is calling for more as franchisees contemplate a new national association.
Gash says while the issue is to some extent a bipartisan issue, she'd like the Gillard Government to set up a small business and family enterprises ombudsman, and require franchisors to negotiate in good faith. New Franchisee Association
What is interesting in the Australian franchise market is that the moves toward franchisee protection are following the same path as the US when states added to federal law .... more and more brands keep popping up despite the FCA claim that franchising was in peril.
On top of this, six new businesses – including Las Olas Fresh Mex Grill, Malaysian food chain Secret Recipe, Ozzy Klean and Eureka Multimedia – have announced plans to start franchising in the last two months. Madeleine Heffernan
For those wishing to view the federal options paper and address the failure to even mention franchising, go to Small Business Dispute Resolution and send your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than June 30.
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