Wednesday, 14 September 2016
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Treasurer. Last night the member for Warringah said Joe Hockey was 'the last Treasurer who was serious about a structural reform budget.' Does the Treasurer agree with the member for Warringah's assessment of his first year in the job, that 'the more time passes, the better Joe Hockey looks.'
I thank the member for his question because it gives me the opportunity to reflect on achievements over the course of the last 12 months. Those achievements over the last 12 months include the fact that our economy has grown at 3.3 per cent and that 200,000 jobs have been created in the Australian economy as we have made the difficult transition from the mining investment boom to this more diversified economy. Over the last 12 months we have been able to pass the multinational tax legislation, which those opposite opposed. Those opposite get on their stump—they get on their stump on the schoolkids bonus, they get on their stump on the pension assets tests, they get on their stump on foreign aid and they get on their stump on multinational tax—but when it comes to actually doing something about it they roll over and they roll away.
But not on this side. On this side of the House we have continued to go down our path of putting in place the plan for jobs and growth that is delivering jobs and growth. Under the Turnbull government confidence in our economy today is eight per cent up on what it was a year ago. Last year at this time there were more pessimists than optimists in the economy, and today that has flipped. Over the last 12 months our economy has continued to grow—up from two per cent last year to 3.3 per cent this year. There are 200,000 more jobs. We have proceeded with things like the response to the financial systems inquiry. We have proceeded with the response to the Harper review, which will see misuse of market power laws coming into this parliament shortly.
These are important issues which help drive growth in our economy, but also the budget measures that we have brought in and have succeeded in having passed through this parliament this week mean that more than one-quarter of the $40 billion worth of budget improvement measures rolling out of the budget that are before this parliament have been passed already in just these first few sitting weeks of the 45th Parliament. That is a record we are pleased to stand behind. It builds on the record that was begun under Treasurer Hockey, who I acknowledge. I acknowledge him for bringing a budget into this place in the 2014-15 year which put forward savings which only this week—three years later—we are now passing through this parliament. Why could those savings not be passed through this parliament? Because of the budget sabotage by those who sit opposite.
Those who sit opposite do not have a plan to arrest the debt and deal with the Labor curse of debt on this parliament. They just have a plan to arrest economic growth. Their commitment to growth is conditional. On this side of the House we pursue jobs and growth, and are delivering. (Time expired)