Businesses respond to COVID-19 challenges


COVID-19 has forced 70 per cent of Australian businesses to change how they operate, according to results from the fourth Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) survey on Business Impacts of COVID-19.

ABS Head of Industry Statistics John Shepherd said that the survey also showed that seven in ten businesses (72%) had a decrease in revenue as a result of COVID-19.

Mr Shepherd said: “Businesses that had changed the way they operate were more than twice as likely to report a decrease in revenue compared with those that were trading normally, 83 per cent against 37 per cent.”

The survey also found that almost three quarters of businesses accessed support measures as a result of COVID-19. This included accessing wage subsidies (55%) and other government support measures (38%).

Looking ahead, government restrictions are expected to continue to have an effect, with businesses reporting they expect some level of impact from social distancing measures (71%), restrictions on trading (63%) and travel restrictions (50%) in the next two months.

This survey is part of a series of additional products the ABS is releasing to measure the economic impact of COVID-19. Data was collected between the 13 May and 22 May 2020. Further information is available in Business Indicators, Business Impacts of COVID-19 (cat. no. 5676.0.55.003).

The ABS thanks all those who contributed data to this release.

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