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The exemption of small business from unfair dismissals has helped small business employment reach its highest level on record, according to today's St George/ACCI small business survey.

The survey shows the small business employment index is 55.1, with strong jobs growth. In addition, the survey reports strong economic conditions for small business, with strong sales revenue and forecast growth.

"The exemption of small business from unfair dismissals has delivered a jobs bonanza for Australian small business," Small Business Minister Fran Bailey said today.

"No longer are small businesses faced with paying thousands in 'go-away' money and wasting countless hours on paperwork. Instead, small business is busy creating jobs thanks to our reforms."

Since WorkChoices was introduced, 387,500 jobs have been created. And, the number of employing small businesses has grown by 31% since June 2003.

"Small business are the big beneficiaries of the Howard Government's workplace relations reforms. Small business has the confidence to create new jobs and invest in their business," Fran Bailey.

"Workplace flexibility allows small business to help attract the best candidate, being able to offer family friendly and flexible arrangements to staff."

The biggest threat to small business is the reimposition of unfair dismissals on small business.

"Labor wants to reimpose unfair dismissals on small business, forcing them to again pay 'go-away' money. This will cost Australia thousands of jobs and pave the way for unions to break back into small business," Fran Bailey said.

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