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Thursday, 27 March 2014
Page: 3369


Mrs PRENTICE (Ryan) (12:07): I rise today to speak on this Clean Energy Finance Corporation (Abolition) Bill 2013 [No. 2] yet again because of the inability of those opposite to listen to the Australian people and respect the decision they made at the last election. This bill repeals the Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act 2012, thereby abolishing the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, as the coalition promised to do prior to the 2013 federal election as part of the carbon tax repeal. It is unfortunate that while in government those opposite refused to follow through on their 2010 election promise, and that now even from opposition they are standing in the way of the coalition government fulfilling ours. One must ask if those opposite purposefully enjoy misleading the Australian people. This bill will see the Clean Energy Finance Corporation's assets and liabilities transferred to the Commonwealth by statutory novation and managed by the Treasury. Abolishing the CEFC will save more than $6 billion in borrowed money to the end of the forward estimates, to 30 June 2017, and $350 million in interest costs alone.

I have spoken in this place many times before on the fact that a whole-of-economy tax and risky financial expenditure will not reduce our carbon emissions, nor will they have a positive impact on our environment. The effect of the carbon tax on everyday Australians can be felt everywhere in our community. It is everyday Australians who are footing the bill for the carbon tax, not the so-called 'big polluters'.

The Labor Party told Australians at the 2010 election, once again, that there would be no carbon tax under a government led by whomever the Labor Party and the caucus happen to like on that day. But just last week, after telling Western Australians yet again that they oppose the carbon tax and on the very day they told the public that they oppose the carbon tax, they voted our bill down in the Senate. The hypocrisy of those opposite to mislead the Australian people's on their stance on the carbon tax time and time again, election after election, is a blight on our nation's history. They are a disgrace. Those opposite are in this place supposedly to represent the Australian public, yet when Australians speak clearly and loudly against the carbon tax those opposite refuse to listen and refuse to represent their constituents. Every day that the Labor and the Greens toxic alliance in the Senate continues to oppose the repeal of the carbon tax is another day Australian people pay more for their electricity prices, more for their gas prices, more to run their businesses and more at the supermarket for food for their families. Labor introduced a whole-of-economy tax on the Australian people. They even acknowledge that it was the wrong thing to do—apparent by the continued false statements and promises at each election to repeal the tax. When it comes to walking the talk, though, Labor votes to keep this toxic tax.

Today marks yet another day that the coalition government is delivering on our election promises. Within the first 100 days of government we introduced the carbon tax repeal bills, and today, after they were voted down by the Senate, we are trying yet again. The coalition promised we would repeal the carbon tax and we are following through on that election commitment. It is clear that the only side of the chamber Australians can trust to tell the truth and to follow through on the promises taken to the election is the coalition. I am proud to stand on this side of the chamber and I commend this bill to the House.