House debates

Monday, 23 March 2020

Questions without Notice

Coronavirus

2:37 pm

Photo of Josh FrydenbergJosh Frydenberg (Kooyong, Liberal Party, Treasurer) Share this | Hansard source

Treasury believe that the measures we've introduced will add the equivalent of about five per cent worth of GDP in the June quarter and around seven per cent of GDP in the September quarter. When it comes to growth, Treasury believe that in terms of the June quarter it could add up to 2¾ per cent and in terms of September it could add up to 3¼ per cent. That doesn't take into account the obvious negative impact of the coronavirus. But, in costing the coronavirus supplement, Treasury estimate that up to a million people, in addition to those who are already on Newstart, could be accessing this new coronavirus supplement. That's a lot of people. But not every one of those people are actually out of a job and unemployed. It could mean that, if you are a sole trader whose income has reduced or if you're someone who's a casual who's had their hours reduced, you can still access this new coronavirus supplement without, effectively, being unemployed. That's the work Treasury has undertaken. It's obviously a very difficult situation to predict. Treasury themselves, as the member for Rankin would be aware, have said that producing forecasts and estimates in this environment—just as the Reserve Bank have said—is very difficult. But those are their best estimates about some of the numbers involved in our costings.

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