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Go Local First campaign launches


10 July 2020 (Canberra) - Australians are being urged to buy from small businesses in their local communities in a nationwide campaign launched today in Canberra by the Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash.

The “GO LOCAL FIRST” campaign, an initiative funded by the Morrison Government and coordinated by the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia (COSBOA), will highlight the vital role of small businesses in our nation’s economic recovery and in keeping communities thriving.

The campaign will encourage Australians to choose local small businesses when they are purchasing products and services to help get the sector back on its feet.

“Australia’s 3.5 million small businesses are the heartbeat of their local communities. When they thrive, communities thrive and the national economy prospers,” said Minister Cash.

“Throughout this pandemic, these businesses have done it tough and while some sadly won’t reopen, others have adapted to serve customers and to keep staff employed.

“Australian small businesses need local communities to back them now, by ‘going local first’ when they need to buy a product or service,” Minister Cash said.

Research commissioned by COSBOA and conducted by the C|T Group shows Australians are spending more at local businesses since the COVID-19 lockdowns began earlier this year, but temporary and permanent closures are preventing them from doing more to support them.

The research finds Australians see broad economic improvements as the most important issues for the country, after managing the spread of the coronavirus.

COSBOA Chief Executive Officer, Peter Strong said “small businesses account for just over one-third of Australia’s GDP and an economic recovery will not be possible without small businesses trading and hiring people.

“We want to see Australians out supporting their local grocers, butchers, accounting and legal firms, gardeners, tradespeople, and goods producers like wineries and farmers.

“When you shop locally, your money stays in your community, meaning local small businesses will still be there as we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis,”

Mr Strong said. The Go Local First campaign will be supported by ambassadors committed to supporting Australia’s small businesses. The nbn and the Pharmacy Guild of Australia have signed on as inaugural ambassadors.

George Tambassis, National President of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia commented “the community pharmacy sector is unique in that it’s composed almost entirely of small businesses because most pharmacies are owned and operated by locals.

“That means we truly understand small business are the heartbeat of their communities.

“But right now, they’re doing it tough, so we should be supporting them now more than ever, or we risk losing them.

“I would encourage everyone to back this campaign and GO LOCAL FIRST next time you need to buy something or need some advice,” Mr Tambassis said.

Brad Whitcomb, nbn Chief Customer Officer said:

“Australians have responded in extraordinary ways to COVID-19 social distancing measures, including as people have relied on the nbn to keep them connected to work, study, entertainment, family, friends and shopping.

“Our recent nbn Behavioural Change Survey highlighted a groundswell of support from consumers wanting to support local businesses online. The research highlights an opportunity for local businesses to strengthen their online presence and to make it make it easier for consumers to find their products and services.

“Going Local First can mean more than a stroll to the local greengrocer; it also means looking for local small businesses online and thinking about buying from them first.”

The GO LOCAL FIRST campaign will be rolled out on outdoor, radio, and digital advertising over the next six months with a call to action to consumers to spend locally first.

For more information on the campaign or to be part of it, go to

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