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No joy for business in budget

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Budget estimates show that inflation (7.5%) and the current account deficit ($18.5 billion) will be worse in 1989-90 than last year. The Government is not expecting any productivity increase and no appreciable reduction in interest rates is in


Nothing new is proposed to help increase the international competitiveness of Australian industry and the Government has increased the tax burden on the very companies that Australia should be expecting to help turn around the huge current account deficit.

Fiddles with Company and PAYE tax collections have increased the tax burden on companies and artificially boosted the budget surplus by $1,435 billion.

The budget makes no progress in terms of essential micro-economic reforms and merely alludes to a restructure of some advisory bodies.

Meaningful reforms are needed to boost productivity, to increase the efficiency of our domestic infrastructure and reduce the cost structures faced by business.

Cosmetic changes to advisory bodies will not achieve the increased international competitiveness which is essential to overcoming Australia's economic problems and growing debt.

It is clear from tonight's budget that serious attempts to overcome the economic problems facing Australia will only be made following the election of a Peacock Coalition Government.

15 August, 1989


Further information: John Robertson 77 3135