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Tuesday, 3 February 2009
Page: 41


Mr CIOBO (4:56 PM) —My question is to the Prime Minister. Prime Minister, will the government commit to ensuring the banks pass on today’s cut in official interest rates to small business operators, who are borrowing at rates far above the official rate and who have not enjoyed the same cuts in interest rates that others have?


Mr RUDD (Prime Minister) —In response to the honourable member’s question, the government’s position in terms of pass-through is consistent across all banks in relation to interest rate cuts by the Reserve Bank—that is, there should be full pass-through as rapidly as possible. I am particularly concerned about the impact on small business borrowing and the availability and the price of credit. The government is also particularly concerned about the impact on other vehicles of credit, including credit cards. The government is monitoring both these areas very closely.