Inflation Up Slightly; Hockey Blames Carbon Tax

Inflation edged up slightly in the December quarter and Treasurer Joe Hockey says it’s the fault of the carbon tax.

HockeyThe December quarter rise in the Consumer Price Index was 0.8%. Headline inflation was 2.7% through the year, up from 2.2% in the September quarter.

Treasurer Joe Hockey said: “The inflation rate continues to be impacted by Labor’s Carbon Tax.” He said electricity prices have increased by 22.5% since the introduction of the tax in July 2012. He called on Labor senators to pass the carbon tax repeal legislation when Parliament meets again in February.

Hockey also commented on new figures from the International Monetary Fund which project that global economic growth will increase from 3% in 2013 to 3.7% in 2014. He said: “The IMF underscores the importance of managing vulnerabilities, notwithstanding the expected strengthening in global economic activity.”

Media release from Treasurer Joe Hockey.

Consumer Price Index – December Quarter 2013

Today’s release of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the December Quarter shows that inflation is slightly above the middle of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s target band. [Read more...]

Abbott Pressures Parliament To Repeal Taxes By Christmas

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has repeated his call for the Parliament to repeal the carbon and mining taxes by Christmas.

With Parliament due to begin its final week for the year tomorrow, Abbott has posted a video on YouTube in which he says that “December is the time to deal with unfinished business”.

There have been suggestions in recent weeks that the government might keep the Parliament sitting closer to Christmas. In fact, the government can only determine when the House will sit and it will have dealt with the relevant legislation by the end of the week.

In the Senate, control lies with the ALP and the Greens and it is not yet clear whether the legislation will be voted on before it rises.

  • Watch Abbott’s video message (2m)

Carbon Tax Repeal Bills Passed By House Of Representatives

The bills to repeal the previous Labor government’s carbon tax have been passed by the House of Representatives.

Third Reading

The third reading of the eleven bills took place at 4.08pm today. The final vote was passed on the voices. In a near-deserted chamber, the Environment Minister, Greg Hunt, was congratulated by his colleagues. [Read more...]

Abbott Government Outlines Legislative Program For First Parliamentary Sittings

The Abbott government has issued a document listing the first items of legislation to be considered by the 44th Parliament.

The Parliament is to be ceremonially opened next Tuesday, November 12. The first Question Time will take place on Wednesday.

As expected, legislation to repeal the carbon and mining taxes will be among the first to be introduced. Abbott has promised that repealing the carbon tax will be the first piece of legislation to be introduced to the House.

Shorten Says ALP Will Support Carbon Tax Abolition Provided ETS Remains

The Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten, has announced that the ALP will support legislation to abolish the fixed carbon price but will move amendments to retain the emissions trading scheme.

Shorten said the ALP will oppose the legislation outright if its amendments are rejected.


Shorten spoke at a press conference with the ALP’s shadow minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, Mark Butler.

The legislation to abolish the carbon tax will be the first item of business when the new House meets for on November 12. Following its passage through the House, attention will focus on the Senate where the ALP and the Greens have a majority until June 30. The legislation is most likely to be passed by the new Senate after July 1.

Despite speculation that the ALP might agree to support the legislation, Shorten’s announcement comes as no real surprise. The former Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, committed the ALP to abandoning the fixed price on July 1 in favour of bringing forward the commencement date of the ETS. Any decision to support abolition of the ETS risked splitting the ALP. The coalition is committed to abolish the fixed price and the ETS. [Read more...]

Carbon Tax Was Socialism Masquerading As Environmentalism, Abbott Tells Tasmanian Liberals

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has addressed the Tasmanian Liberal Party State Council, his first major speech to the party since winning the September 7 election.

Abbott congratulated the State Council on the 11.3% swing to the Liberals in the election. The party won three seats (Bass, Braddon and Lyons) from the ALP. Abbott said: “So 50 days on, it’s clear that Australia is under new management, it’s clear that Australia is open for business and it’s clear that the only people who are still the same is the Australian Labor Party.”

Abbott called on the ALP to pass the carbon tax repeal legislation in the Senate, saying it was the “best Christmas present that Bill Shorten could give the people of Australia”.

Abbott said: “So let’s be under no illusions, the carbon tax was socialism masquerading as environmentalism. That’s what the carbon tax was. That’s why the carbon tax has been rejected by the Australian people. We are implementing what the Australian people voted for and the only people who are still in denial about what the Australian people voted for are the members of the federal parliamentary Labor Party.”

  • Listen to Abbott’s speech (20m)

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  • Watch Abbott’s speech (20m)

Transcript of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Address to the Tasmanian Liberal Party State Council.

Eric, members and delegates, ladies and gentlemen, my friends, thank you so much for that warm introduction. Thank you so much for that extraordinary welcome and I will know whether this speech has been successful by whether I get the same enthusiastic response at the end that I have at the beginning.

It is great to be here in Hobart. It’s great to be amongst my Tasmanian colleagues. It is so good to be here to savour success and I want all of you to be so proud of the fact that while our Party, our Coalition did extremely well right around Australia at the recent election, nowhere did it do better than here in Tasmania. It was an 11.3 per cent swing to the Liberal Party here in Tasmania and I want to say congratulations and thank you. [Read more...]

Abbott And Hunt Release Carbon Tax Repeal Legislation

The Abbott government has released an exposure draft of its carbon tax repeal legislation.

The legislation will be open for consultation until November 4, ahead of the return of Parliament on November 12.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Environment Minister Greg Hunt made the announcement at a press conference in Canberra today. They reaffirmed their commitment to introducing the repeal legislation as the first item of business in the new Parliament.


Describing new Labor leader Bill Shorten as a “pragmatist”, Abbott said the legislation gave the ALP a last chance to “repent” for its breach of faith with the Australian community when it introduced the carbon tax. “If you are in favour of a good deal for Australian families, and a fair deal for Australian workers and jobs, this is legislation you must support.” [Read more...]