Wednesday, 2 December 2020
Questions without Notice
I thank the member for Canning, who is a proud soldier who has worn the uniform and represented Australia abroad. Across his electorate there are around 60,000 constituents who are benefiting from the tax relief that was in this year's budget and legislated through the parliament. Around 20,000 pensioners and others on income support in the electorate of Canning have benefited from the two $750 payments that have already made their way to the Australian people.
Today's national accounts confirm that the economic recovery is underway. This is the economic recovery that Australians have worked very hard for in the face of a once-in-a-century pandemic and in the face of the biggest economic shock since the Great Depression. Quarterly GDP growth was up in the September quarter by 3.3 per cent, the single largest increase since 1976, and this followed a fall of seven per cent in the June quarter. While technically the recession may be over, Australia's economic recovery is not. There is a long and hard road ahead, and there are many Australians who continue to do it very tough in the face of this large economic shock.
This has been a consumption led recovery in the context of today's national accounts—a boost in consumption of 7.9 per cent, a significant reflection of the fact that the virus is coming under control and people are going about their daily lives. The biggest increase has been in transport, in cafes, in restaurants and in hotels. There were big jumps in every state and territory, bar Victoria. We saw a 6.8 per cent increase in New South Wales, a 6.8 per cent increase in Queensland, a 6.7 per cent increase in South Australia, a 5.5 per cent increase in Tasmania, a 4.9 per cent increase in Western Australia, a six per cent increase in the Northern Territory and a two per cent increase in the ACT, but a one per cent fall in Victoria. But for the situation in Victoria, if Victoria had achieved the same GDP growth that we'd seen across the other states, the GDP growth number for the September quarter would have been five per cent, not 3.3 per cent.
Mr Brendan O'Connor interjecting—