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Thursday, 27 March 2014
Page: 3401

Economy


Mr TEHAN (Wannon) (14:08): My question is to the Treasurer. Would the Treasurer outline the government's plans to grow the economy and create jobs?

Opposition members interjecting

The SPEAKER: There will be silence on my left!



Mr HOCKEY (North SydneyThe Treasurer) (14:09): Our plans are very clear. We have been entirely consistent for years now in dealing with what were the changing economic circumstances over the last few years and in fact the last few decades. We have been entirely consistent. We said government cannot afford to waste taxpayers' money.

Opposition members interjecting

The SPEAKER: There is too much noise on my left!

Mr HOCKEY: That is consistent line No.1. As soon as Labor started to roll out the pink batts—there was a pause in the interjections just now amongst Labor. The pink batts program, remember that? Gee, that was a good use of money, except that it cost lives and it was a terrible waste of money.

Mr Husic interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Chifley will desist!

Mr HOCKEY: And then there are the GP Super Clinics. We are hearing every day just how well that program went. Only the Labor Party could build medical facilities that do not treat any patients. Yet they still have not rolled out a full program.

Mr Champion interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Wakefield will desist or leave under 94(a).

Mr HOCKEY: And what waste we have seen in the NBN. What a terrible and sad story—a litany of waste and incompetence associated with a bill that would have well exceeded $70 billion, if it had remained on track. The net result of all that was $667 billion of debt and $123 billion of deficits over the next four years on top of $190 billion of deficits over the last five years. That $190 billion worth of deficits over the last five years is the equivalent of 200 major new teaching hospitals across the country.

What are we going to do? We are going to fix the mess. Tough decisions will have to be made, because sooner or later the truth about the budget was going to be out. The record of Labor is rich.

Mr Butler interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Port Adelaide will desist.

Mr HOCKEY: But we have a plan that focuses on growth and jobs. We are putting $1.5 billion into WestConnex which will, in itself, deliver 10,000 direct and indirect jobs during construction, including hundreds of apprenticeships.

We are focusing on other infrastructure projects, such as the East West Link in Melbourne, which is worth $1.5 billion and will have 3,500 construction jobs, and the $1 billion Gateway Motorway in Brisbane. These deliver real productivity benefits and real jobs.

We want to re-establish the Australian Building and Construction Commission, and get rid of the corruption in the unions—how important is that? And we are going to abolish the carbon tax and the mining tax. We have a plan for jobs. Labor is reckless with the economy.