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The backbone of regional and rural economies: small business and community resilience
Bushfires, floods, and storms are a part of the Australian experience. In recent years they have become more common and the impacts, more intense. Moreover, in the future, climate change will mean that extreme events will become more frequent and intense. This presents a challenge to communities that are exposed to natural hazards.
Insurance is key for individuals, businesses, and communities to enable a rapid process of recovery after disaster strikes. However, a large portion of businesses located in hazardous zones are not adequately insured and in some cases without insurance. This poses an economic threat to regional communities as their underinsurance may leave businesses and the wider economy struggling to recover.
This study assesses the impact of natural disasters to small businesses, using two case studies, the Townsville floods of 2019 and the ‘Black Summer’ Bushfires of 2019-20, as well as the role that insurance plays in the economic recovery of the regions.