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Abbott must commit to a budget surplus and back government saves
SENATOR THE HON PENNY WONG
MINISTER FOR FINANCE AND DEREGULATION
Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600 Australia ï Tel: (02) 6277 7400 Fax: (02) 6273 4110
PW 88/11 1 May 2012
ABBOTT MUST COMMIT TO A BUDGET SURPLUS AND BACK GOVERNMENT SAVES
Next week, Tony Abbott must tell Australians whether he will support the Government’s budget savings measures in the Parliament or risk wrecking the surplus.
Returning the budget to surplus is the right thing to do for our economy; it will give the Reserve Bank the flexibility to move on interest rates if conditions warrant, support our growing economy and shore up our position should global conditions worsen.
It’s time Mr Abbott comes clean with Australians about what his plan for the economy would be, and he has the opportunity to do that when he responds to the Budget next Thursday.
It’s also time Mr Abbott tells Australians what $70 billion in cuts to services he would to make.
Will he go after pensioners like his Shadow Treasurer, Joe Hockey, has urged?
For the last two years, Mr Abbott’s Budget-in-Reply speeches have been purely negative and devoid of any detail.
Last year, he talked tough and objected to our savings measures but when it came down to it he supported our savings because he recognised them to be sensible policy.
If Mr Abbott is serious about the economy, he will either support our savings measures to return the budget to surplus or put forward properly developed and costed alternatives next week.
Because it is irresponsible and dishonest to call for a surplus, but block responsible savings measures that would deliver it.
Next week, the Gillard Government will lay out its plans to further strengthen Australia’s economy while promoting jobs, supporting front-line services in health and education, providing assistance for those who need it most and delivering tax relief for low income-earners and small businesses.
The Opposition says they support a surplus and the test will be if they support our saves in the Parliament or explain to Australians how they’ll make up the difference.
Otherwise Mr Abbott’s economic recklessness will wreck the surplus.
Media Contact: Evelyn Ek 0412 887 853