Albanese’s speech will emphasise the role small businesses have already played in adopting renewable energy such as solar power to tackle rising bills.

“We know how vital you are to Australia’s future prosperity, as job creators and as innovators. Because so often small businesses are the first movers, the early adopters. Embracing new technology and clean energy,” he will say, according to an advance copy of his speech.

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“We also know that small business have consistently led the nation in embracing solar power to take control of their bills. Today, nearly one in three small businesses have rooftop solar. And nearly one in five have a battery storage system. That speaks to a sense of environmental responsibility – but also a practical, commercial reality.”

Albanese announced the launch last week of a $1 billion program to make solar panels in New South Wales’ Hunter Valley.

The emphasis on renewable energy such as solar power as a means to drive down power prices is a deliberate contrast with Opposition Leader Peter Dutton, who is expected to identify the location of six sites for future nuclear power stations before the May budget.

Dutton told the small business conference on Wednesday that the Coalition, in government, would introduce simpler industrial relations laws and lower taxes, and pitched the Liberal Party as the friend of small business.

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