An industry survey has revealed that 82.7 percent of Victorian dealers will be ineligible for JobKeeper 2.0, resulting in an estimated employment loss of 24.95 percent across the state’s new-car dealerships, says the Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC).
Motorcycle, truck and farm machinery dealerships are in a similar predicament.
“The Federal Government needs to recognise the anomaly that was the month of June this year. Because of significant incentives many people took advantage of the Instant Asset Write-Off scheme, which skewed sales results for one single, unrepeatable month.
“The unfortunate effect of this is that it made a large number of dealerships ineligible for JobKeeper 2.0. This is unfair,” said VACC CEO, Geoff Gwilym.
Further strengthening the argument for a review of the government’s proposed subsidy criteria, the industry study, conducted by VACC, revealed:
- 82.7 percent of respondents (529 dealerships) will not qualify for JobKeeper 2.0 under the current eligibility requirements
- 3,285 jobs are estimated to be lost across Victorian car dealerships during the period
- February – December 2020
- 1,226 Victorian employees are expected to have already been lost, made redundant, or not replaced between the current JobKeeper period of March – September 2020.
“These are horrible numbers; we cannot sugar-coat this. It is likely that many dealerships will close and some may never open again,” declared Mr. Gwilym.
The Chamber is calling on government to take heed of industry concerns and research, noting that these results only reflect the impact on dealer-specific positions, and do not include the inevitable flow on affect to the Victorian aftermarket, which relies on the health of dealerships.
While providing a voice for Victorian dealerships in the government arena, VACC also has a message for its members during these uncertain times.
“I also encourage dealerships to maintain some of their marketing and communications operations so that, when lockdown eventually finishes, they will have maintained good relations with existing and potential customers,” said Mr Gwilym.