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Wednesday, 2 June 2010
Page: 4970

Mr HOCKEY (2:08 PM) —My question is to the Treasurer. I refer the Treasurer to the testimony of Treasury officials last night in Senate estimates which confirmed that Treasury had supplied the raw data used in the Treasurer’s economic note of 9 May. Will the Treasurer confirm that the pie charts used extensively by the markets in his economic note were actually constructed in his office?

Mr SWAN (Treasurer) —I stand by the accuracy of all the figures in the economic note—absolutely. Let us just go through what this is all about, because the member for North Sydney has been very, very sloppy yet again. I know people on this side would find that probably hard to understand, but of course he has! Now what does this relate to? This relates to the fact—

Mr Pyne —Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order on relevance. The question was extremely specific, and that was whether the pie chart was constructed in his office. It was not whether he stood by the data in the note. It was whether he constructed the pie chart himself.

The SPEAKER —The Treasurer will relate his material to the question.

Mr SWAN —You always laugh when Joe’s asking you about pies.

The SPEAKER —Order! The Treasurer will refer to members—

Honourable members interjecting—

The SPEAKER —Order! The Treasurer will withdraw and the Treasurer will refer to members by their titles—and I cut my own microphone off, which was not too good. The two ministers are not quite the closest ministers to me but they would have heard it anyway. So the Treasurer will withdraw, the Treasurer will refer to members by their titles and in his response he will relate his material to the question.

Mr SWAN —I withdraw, Mr Speaker. Around the start of the decade the Australian community received about $1 in royalties and resource charges for every $3 of resource profits. In 2008-09 that figure had fallen to $1 in $7. This goes to the very core of the embarrassment of those opposite.

Opposition members interjecting—

The SPEAKER —Order!

Mr Hale interjecting

The SPEAKER —The member for Solomon is warned.

Mr Bowen interjecting

The SPEAKER —The parliamentary secretary is lucky not to be warned.

Mr Dutton —Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order. Going back to your point and clarification that you provided to the Treasurer, which he is now in complete defiance of, the issue is relevancy. The Treasurer was asked to confirm whether the pie charts were constructed in his office.

The SPEAKER —The member for Dickson will resume his seat. The preamble to the question talked about the testimony in Senate estimates and then went on about what action was taken in the Treasurer’s office. I am assuming, even though I have not read the testimony in Senate estimates, that the remarks that the Treasurer is making relate to that. But, as I have said to him, he must relate his material to the question.

Mr SWAN —Yes, Mr Speaker, because the pie chart shows and the data that it is based on—

Mr Briggs interjecting

The SPEAKER —The member for Mayo will withdraw.

Mr Briggs —I withdraw.

Mr SWAN —The pie chart—and the data it is based on—shows that the Australian people have not been getting their fair share. The member for Dickson is only interested in shares. He is not interested in a fair share for the Australian people. Not even the mining industry thinks that there should not be more paid by most companies so the Australian people get a fair share. The only people in Australia who believe that are those opposite. The Leader of the Opposition thinks the mining industry is paying too much tax. I stand by all of the data in the economic note, so I stand by that. There was a discussion about this last night in Senate estimates and of course that will be responded to in the normal way by the department.

The SPEAKER —I call the member for Solomon.