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Monday, 9 December 2013
Page: 1168

Senator MASON (QueenslandParliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs) (16:42): by leave—I move an amendment to business of the Senate notice of motion No. 3 moved by Senator Stephens:

Before paragraph (a), insert:

(aa) Australia’s deteriorating budget situation caused by the former Labor Government’s economic mismanagement;

I assume that will be supported by acclamation!

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: The question is that the amendment moved by Senator Mason be agreed to.

Question negatived.

Senator MASON: I seek leave to make a short statement.

The DEPUTY PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator MASON: I thank my colleagues. Much as I often agree with Senator Stephens, I want to remind the Senate that over the final 15 months of the previous Labor government they removed $5.6 billion from the forward estimates of the aid budget. In contrast to Labor, our commitment to the aid program will be demonstrated by a reliable allocation of aid spending at around $5 billion per year. Finally, the coalition will ensure that the overseas development assistance is spent efficiently and effectively by committing to strengthening performance measures and by consolidating the program in the Indo-Pacific region. I thank my colleagues.

Original question agreed to.