Senate debates

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

Questions without Notice


2:06 pm

Photo of Simon BirminghamSimon Birmingham (SA, Liberal Party, Minister for Finance) Share this | Hansard source

Last night we did deliver a budget that sets out the next stages in Australia's recovery plan, the next stages in our plan to make sure we keep Australians safe—safe from the threats of COVID-19 to their health, safe from the threats of COVID-19 to their jobs and their economic security. Equally, it's a plan that lays out how we will continue to grow the economy over the long term and drive further economic growth, productivity growth and jobs creation for Australians and, of course, how we will deliver on our promises to fund the essential services that Australians rely on.

Even in the face of a pandemic that has knocked our economy and parts of the world for six, we're seeing remarkable resilience across Australia. We're seeing consumer sentiment at its highest in 11 years and business conditions reaching record highs—all of that after the first recession that Australia had faced in 30 years, caused by the COVID pandemic. Most countries are simply still struggling to get back to the starting points they had at the pandemic, but we've managed to get Australia back to the point of having more people in work than had been the case. That gives us the opportunity to deliver on our commitments to invest in essential services: $18 billion for aged-care services, more than $2 billion for mental health services and over $13 billion honouring our promises to fully fund the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

This budget delivers key measures that will turbocharge the economy further, continue to drive economic growth and investment and create jobs into the future, including extra tax relief for low- and middle-income earners as part of, of course, our sweeping tax reforms delivering lower income tax across the board. There is the extension of the temporary full expensing measures to make sure we get businesses going, new apprentice places—100,000 of them being supported by additional government support programs—and $110 billion of infrastructure to build the country stronger.


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