Breakfast Q&A with Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen MP

“We are in a position to have bigger cuts than the Government in the shorter term”

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen MP and Anne Stanley MP

Breakfast Q&A with Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen MP

“We are in a position to have bigger cuts than the Government in the shorter term”

(Translation appears in Arabic section)

Anne Stanley Federal Member for Werriwa, New South Wales hosted a breakfast Q&A with guest speaker Chris Bowen MP. Amongst those in attendance were distinguished guests, business leaders, local citizens and members of the media. Anne Stanley MP paid respects to the Elders past, present and welcomed those in attendance to participate in a Q & A with Chris Bowen. An extract of his introductory speech follows. 

Hon. Chris Bowen MP Shadow Federal Treasurer

Thanks very much Anne and thanks everybody for coming this is our third year.  I’ll be back as treasurer for the annual breakfast. It is fair to say the battle ground is now set of the competing players for the economy and the budget. We are in a position to have Bill on Thursday night have bigger cuts than the Government in the shorter term. To restore health and education, have better funding initiatives from us. And also for Bill to outline in more detail Wednesday at the National Press Club. A bigger and better return to surplus path and budget paid out path.  Now how can we do all those three things it’s a choice. You can have bigger tax cuts but smaller surpluses or you can have more money for health, education, smaller tax cuts.  Of course there are choice but we’ve also made other decisions over those years reforming the tax system; closing down loop holes and concessions for the tax system which are no longer fit for purpose and which are not fair, reform negative gearing and put it to work to improve house and supply and also improve the budget bottom line.  

Refund ability is very controversial we are the only country in the world with it and it really means that no tax is being paid on much of the corporate profits. This costs the budget 6 billion dollars a year.  That is more than we spend on public schools in Australia, it is more three times what we spend in the Australian Federal Police in the era of concern about security.

We have a very responsible approach. We have as a result a very different plan.  Tax cuts in 2022 between lower income earners, part income earners and tax cuts in 2024 which abolish tax bracket and make the tax system flatter, ie less progressive and that is very expensive.  How does anybody know what is going to happen in 2024?  We don’t know what the world economy will be doing and this is a Government which of course told us last year we needed to increase firstly to cut tax, we all needed to pay the Medicare levy.  We were told we were irresponsible for opposing the tax rise last year and now we’re told that this year we can have a tax cut and we know what we’re going to do in 2024.  The Government doesn’t know what’s going to happen one year to next so it certainly it can’t be in any seriousness making offers for 2024.  If the world economy turns down over that period, some sort of national downturn is almost inevitable. 

It is good that the budget is returning to surplus in 2019 and it is almost impossible not to with the circumstances of 120 economies around the world experiencing growth at the moment that is the best we have had in 10 years. We have America growing strongly, Europe has actually growing strongly, China seem to grow strongly, India is growing at pace as the world’s fastest growing large economy Indonesia is coming along; basically Japan is doing ok.  Everywhere is growing well which has set up obvious a fair bit of boost for our economy. 

Companies have made a lot of losses in that period which they can then claim as a tax loss. Now for the first time those losses have gone where companies making a profit and paying tax.  National income goes up for the first time in a long time, our competitive goes up as well.   That is why we’re seeing a significant uptake and improvement in Government finances.  That is the budget and budget reply in a nutshell. 


Copyright 2007