House debates

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Matters of Public Importance

Economic Leadership

4:00 pm

Photo of Rowan RamseyRowan Ramsey (Grey, Liberal Party) Share this | Hansard source

Now they say they have never heard of him. You wanted the Australian public to have him for Prime Minister. That was another one of your good ideas. You want to put aside Mark Latham now, but Kim Beazley—and he is a man that you should be proud of you—also said that this is something that should be reformed. So after this has been hanging around in a kitbag for 15 years this government has had the gumption to stand up and do something about it. We should be proud of that. That is economic leadership.

The last budget was based around assisting small enterprises and businesses to get ahead in Australia. We know on this side of the House that if we want Australia to succeed what we need to do is stimulate small business, because they are the backbone of this economy. So we moved to assist them by giving them the $20,000 write-off for capital expenditure.

Today we are dealing with a creation of the now Leader of the Opposition from Fair Work Australia, which is the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal. Its intent seems to be to wipe out owner-operator truck drivers in Australia—and we need to get our heads around this—by setting rates for owner-operators such that it is more expensive for them to drive their own trucks than it is to put a driver in their truck. What possible reasoning can we have for this except that they do not like small business? They want big business to employ lots of drivers so that they can unionise the workforce and so that those big businesses can deduct those union fees and send them to their mates in the TWU.

Mr Swan interjecting


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