House debates

Wednesday, 23 November 2022

Questions without Notice

Economy

3:00 pm

Dai Le (Fowler, Independent) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Treasurer. I'm sure many residents in Western Sydney and across Australia are awaiting their electricity bills with trepidation. With Christmas only about four weeks away, families are feeling the pinch as they spend more on food, petrol—whose price has increased—and household bills, on top of saving money to buy presents for their loved ones. You have said you will announce 'temporary, meaningful, sensible regulations to ease the energy crisis'. What is the date the government will announce these new measures?

Photo of Jim ChalmersJim Chalmers (Rankin, Australian Labor Party, Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

Thank you very much to the member for Fowler for her question and for her interest and obviously for the way that she's engaged on these issues for some time now. The reason we are prepared to make that temporary, meaningful, responsible intervention in these markets between now and the end of the year is that we do think it's unacceptable, the sorts of price rises which are anticipated by the Treasury and contained in the budget papers that I released about a month ago. The Australian people are paying a very hefty price for Russia's aggression in Ukraine and for a decade of coalition incompetence when it comes to energy markets. The reality is—

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Hume!

Photo of Jim ChalmersJim Chalmers (Rankin, Australian Labor Party, Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

that the failures of the member for Hume and others on that side of the House mean that we are more vulnerable to these international shocks in global energy markets than we should be, and—

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Hume will cease interjecting.

Photo of Jim ChalmersJim Chalmers (Rankin, Australian Labor Party, Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

that's because, over the course of a decade, those opposite took more capacity out of the energy markets than they put in, and that made us more vulnerable. So, that's how we find ourselves—

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The member for Hume is warned.

Photo of Jim ChalmersJim Chalmers (Rankin, Australian Labor Party, Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

in the position that we're in, and it is unacceptable. That's why I am working closely with the industry minister, the resources minister, the energy minister, the Prime Minister, the trade minister and others to find a way to intervene in these markets in a meaningful way, in a temporary way and in a responsible way. And to those opposite—

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

The Treasurer will resume his seat, just for a moment. The member for Fowler on a point of order?

Dai Le (Fowler, Independent) Share this | | Hansard source

Treasurer, I just wanted a date, if it's possible.

Photo of Milton DickMilton Dick (Speaker) Share this | | Hansard source

That wasn't a point of order, but you are seeking relevance. I'd just invite the Treasurer, in his remaining one minute and 10 seconds, to conclude his answer regarding the member for Fowler's question.

Photo of Jim ChalmersJim Chalmers (Rankin, Australian Labor Party, Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

We will progress this work as quickly as we can, and we will make an announcement before the end of the year.