The Victorian Government will establish a $250 million Business Growth Fund for small to medium enterprises (SMEs), but is yet to provide details as to how the fund will work.

Supported by the Labor Government, First State Super and VicSuper, the design of the fund is yet to be finalised and is subject to a formal agreement. The fund will be the largest of its kind in Australia, aiming to help Victorian SMEs access capital, as well as creating jobs to grow the state's economy,

In April, the federal government announced the Australian Business Growth Fund, a public-private small business funding vehicle. It set a $1 billion goal, but was widely criticised by the banks and big business, which argued reducing red tape and IR reform were more important.

Victorian treasurer Tim Pallas said the government will work with First State Super and VicSuper to develop a $50 million contribution towards the Victorian fund.

“The Victorian Business Growth Fund will give some of our best small and medium sized businesses the incentive to take on new ventures and employ more Victorians,” said Pallas.

The new fund joins similar initiatives in place by the Labor Govermnent to support businesses, including the Victorian Jobs and Investment Fund and payroll tax cuts announced in the Victorian Budget 2019/20.

Packaging News

A Collective Action Group has been announced to drive 2025 National Packaging Targets includes leading industry and government representatives. Big names like Visy and Pact Group, Nestle, Coca-Cola Amatil, and Coles, David Jones and Country Road are among the line-up.

Supermarket giant Aldi is committing to dramatically reducing its plastic packaging, saying it will axe it by a quarter within the next six years, and it will cease supply of many single use plastic products by the end of next year.

In a world first, FMCG giant Procter & Gamble is set to pilot skincare products in refillable containers, which it says could dramatically reduce the amount of plastic used in the beauty category.