Queensland named bankruptcy capital of Australia


QUEENSLAND has notched up more business-related bankruptcies than anywhere else in Australia in the past year, with dozens of Queenslanders going bankrupt every week.

New figures compiled by the Australian Financial Security Authority reveal there were about 1400 business-related personal bankruptcies in the Sunshine State in 2019-20 - or about 110 each month.

Qld suburb revealed as a national bankruptcy hotspot

Cure 'found' to stop COVID-19 business deaths

'Tsunami' of bankruptcies, collapses to smash Qld


It meant Queensland took out the title of the most business-related bankruptcies in the country, with NSW recording about 1,280 while about 900 were recorded in Victoria.

While Queensland's figures were down about 25 per cent from 2018-19, the Sunshine State still recorded more than one in four of the total number of business-related bankruptcies in Australia.

The AFSA figures refer to personal bankruptcies of a business nature, such as a sole trader who has gone bankrupt.

It comes as the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland warns there will likely be an increase in the number of businesses that will be unable to keep financially afloat.

Treasurer Cameron Dick. Picture: Richard Walker
Treasurer Cameron Dick. Picture: Richard Walker

CCIQ's general manager of advocacy and policy, Amanda Rohan, said their latest survey showed 54 per cent of businesses were unsure of their ability to keep operating beyond the next 12 months without additional stimulus measures.

She said the government should be removing complexities for businesses as well as improving its procurement policy framework, to give small businesses more opportunities to win government tenders.

"Sole-traders are an important part of our economy, making up about 280,000 of all small businesses in Queensland," she said.

"They are a critical component of the supply-chain, but they are often be overlooked from government when programs, grants and support is rolled out.

"To stop the shed of business the government should be implementing business friendly policies that revolve around making it easier to do business in Queensland."

Asked if the government was forecasting a big increase in bankruptcies later this year, Treasurer Cameron Dick said it would be very hard for many business when JobKeeper ended.

"There are some positive signs, with Queensland the only state to record a decline in unemployment last month, and the only state on the eastern seaboard to record an increase in retail trade in the 12 months to June 2020," he said.

Deputy Leader of the Opposition Tim Mander speaking in Parliament. Picture: Tara Croser.
Deputy Leader of the Opposition Tim Mander speaking in Parliament. Picture: Tara Croser.

LNP treasury spokesman Tim Mander seized on the bankruptcy figures, accusing the government of turning Queensland into Australia's "bankruptcy capital".

"Queensland used to be the state where you could get ahead and make the most of opportunities but under Labor it is at the bottom of the economic ladder," Mr Mander said.

According to the AFSA figures, there were 253 business-related bankruptcies in the June quarter in Queensland - down from the 422 recorded in the September quarter before COVID hit.

Originally published as Queensland named bankruptcy capital of Australia