Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Weekly Message: Reducing Labor’s Debt

Prime Minister Tony Abbott says his government’s first Budget is “tough” but also “visionary”.

Delivering his weekly message, Abbott said the Budget “lays the foundation for a stronger economy..by reducing debt by almost $300 billion over the next decade”.

Abbott said “all Australians are contributing to the Budget repair”. He emphasised the Budget’s investment in roads and infrastructure and said these “nation building initiatives” are only possible if everyone works together to reduce “Labor’s debt”. [Read more…]


Cormann Appears To Confirm Deficit Levy In Budget; Unease On Government Backbench

The Minister for Finance, Senator Mathias Cormann, has appeared to confirm that the federal government will introduce a deficit levy in next week’s Budget.

Cormann

Speaking at a press conference after a Cabinet meeting today, Cormann maintained the government’s line on what it says is a budget emergency. He said that people on high incomes had to play their part through what he termed “appropriately targeted measures”.

Cormann promoted a booklet titled “Labor’s Mess” that he said has been produced by Liberal backbencher Kelly O’Dwyer. In fact, the booklet is authorised by the Federal Director of the Liberal Party, Brian Loughnane. It appears on a Liberal Party website authorised by Loughnane. [Read more…]


Abbott Emphasises Government’s Budget Strategy As Polls Head South

Amid a hostile reaction to proposals from the Audit Commission and opinion polls showing the government trailing the ALP, Prime Minister Tony Abbott has sought to focus attention on the government’s overall budget strategy.

In his weekly video message, Abbott concentrated on the Budget deficit and said “we must again live within our means, as we did in the Howard years”.

Abbott said all Australians needed to “chip in” so that the “legacy of debt” from the ALP can be controlled. He said: “Beyond a certain point, you don’t control debt; debt controls you.” [Read more…]


MYEFO: Greens Say Focus Should Be On How To Raise Revenue, Call For End To Panic On Debt

The Australian Greens have reacted to the release of the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) by calling for an end to the panic about debt in favour of a new focus on how to raise revenue to fund services and jobs.

Milne

“Now is not the time to be talking about spending restraint because of a panic on debt,” said Greens leader Senator Christine Milne.

“The old parties wasted the resources boom,” Milne said. “A serious look at raising revenue is necessary to address subdued unemployment, an ageing workforce and increased demand for services.”

  • Listen to Milne (12m)

Text of media release from the Australian Greens.

End panic on debt and let’s talk about revenue and jobs – Greens

Responding to the release of the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook, Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne has warned against deep budget cuts and says the focus should now be on how we can raise revenue to spend on public services and the infrastructure of the future. [Read more…]


MYEFO: Budget Deficit Rises To $47.6bn And $123bn Over Four Years; Debt To Hit $667bn In A Decade

The Treasurer, Joe Hockey, has released the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) which shows the federal budget deficit will increase by $17.5 billion to $47.6 billion this year, with total deficits of $123 billion over the next four years.

The MYEFO forecasts gross debt to reach $667 billion in a decade and be around 26% of GDP in 2023-24. Net debt is expected to peak at 16.2% in 2018-19, the highest since 1996-97.

Hockey

Hockey released the MYEFO in an address the National Press Club in Canberra. It forecasts a budget deficit for the fiscal year 2014-15 of $33.9 billion and $24 billion in 2015-16. Whereas both the Coalition and the ALP said they would deliver a budget surplus in 2016-17, MYEFO forecasts a deficit of $17.7 billion.

Unemployment, currently 5.8%, is predicted to be 6% in June, rising to 6.25% for the next three years, adding $3.7 billion to the welfare bill. A blowout of $11.3 billion is forecast for the welfare budget. [Read more…]