Former Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer has suggested the shift of the Australia Day date from January 26 to the last Friday of the month every year to enhance productivity and conveniently address the “invasion day” debate.

Australia Day is annually celebrated on January 26 as the day that marks the arrival of the First Fleet in 1788. Fischer told AAP that the arrival that is tied to Australia Day is history now and there was a need to look forward to changing the dates according to the present needs. According to The Guardian, the ex-deputy PM also said that if the date was changed, it would resolve the “invasion day” debate and benefit the wellbeing of its people.

He added that if the date was moved to the said proposed one, it would encourage businesses to plan everything during a long weekend every January and enhance the productiveness of its ventures. “For some with concerns relating to the aspect of ‘Invasion Day,’ this could ease the burden on average six times out of seven,” Fischer said.

“Productivity at the start of each year would be boosted in a way that would help especially small business if Australia Day was observed on the last Friday of January each year, so never held on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday that always adds to absenteeism.”

Besides moving the Australia Day date, Fischer also advocated shifting Easter to the first weekend of April every year. “If we could agree, it would also be more convenient and bring in to line the Orthodox and Christian Churches,” Fischer told the Herald Sun. The proposal came following the announcement made by Christian leaders that it took around five to ten years to agree on the date fixed for Easter. For thousands of years, they were involved in a debate advocating for fixing the date possibly on the second or third Sunday of April.