Labor’s Australian Investment Guarantee will significantly boost business investment in energy saving projects, lowering energy bills, cutting carbon pollution and growing jobs.

While the Turnbull Government likes to talk up their commitment to improving energy productivity, the fact is Australia’s performance been dismal in recent years. In the latest report card on the National Energy Productivity plan released in December, it was revealed annual energy productivity growth has fallen from the long term average rate of 1.7 per cent per year to just 0.4 per cent in the last year.

The opportunities for industrial energy savings in Australia are only made greater by the fact we are a global laggard when it comes to industrial energy efficiency.

The 2016 International Energy Efficiency Scorecard produced by US think tank the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, ranked Australia 21st out of 23 nations on industrial energy efficiency, beating only South Africa and Saudi Arabia.

This poor performance puts a break on business and jobs growth, amplifies the effect of energy price hikes under the Turnbull Government and makes cutting industrial carbon pollution harder.

At a time when energy costs are threatening jobs across the economy, the Australian Investment Guarantee will make it much easier for all Australian businesses to invest in energy saving projects and upgrades.

Under the Australian Investment Guarantee, all Australian businesses will be able to immediately deduct 20 per cent of investment in eligible depreciable assets over $20,000, including assets that lower energy use and improve energy efficiency. From small businesses upgrading refrigeration systems, to the largest manufacturers upgrading smelters, Australian businesses will receive permanent, targeted tax support to modernise and cut their energy bills.

Unlike previous programs to boost energy efficiency through greater business investment, the Australian Investment Guarantee is easily accessible to all businesses and will operate through the tax system, minimising compliance costs and maximising the benefits to business, workers and the climate.