Ararat small business development officer to be employed

ARARAT - The State Coalition Government is supporting business and economic development in Ararat Rural City with $75,000 funding announced by Nationals Member for Western Victoria, David O'Brien.

Mr O'Brien said Ararat Rural City Council would use the funding to employ a Small Business Development Officer.

"Within Council boundaries there are 375 non-agricultural small businesses, employing almost 800 people and forming a key part of Ararat's local economy," Mr O'Brien said.

"The Small Business Development Officer will work to increase the number and strength of local small businesses, creating a good investment and return for the Ararat economy.

"The officer will assist existing and new home-based, shop front and mobile service businesses by providing marketing opportunities and focused training on technology opportunities."

Mr O'Brien said the project aimed to increase the number of small businesses in Ararat Rural City by creating a positive environment for growth and supporting small businesses by facilitating sales and promotion activities.

"It also aims to create economic pathways for additional employment opportunities and strengthen the skill level of the small business community through training and education in information and communication technology," Mr O'Brien said.

"The project will help business adjust to a changing economic environment, building on the town's resilience by increasing skill levels, identifying new business opportunities and increasing economic activity."

Mr O'Brien said Victorian Government funding to employ the Small Business Development Officer would be provided through the Local Skills Partnerships program to Ararat Rural City Council, which will contribute $58,360.

The two-year appointment of the Small Business Development Officer is expected to take effect shortly.

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