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Leader of the Opposition



"The*composition of EPAC makes a mockery of Mr Hawke's rhetoric about consensus Government", the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Peacock said today.

"Out of a total membership of 17, EPAC will comprise 9 members who are associated with- the Labor Party. Apart from Hr Hawke, Mr Keating and Mr Willis, EPAC will also include 4 members of the AC-TU and two Labor

State Governments, These people who will have majority control of EPAC will do little more than rubber stamp the big spending, big Government policies of the Federal Labor Government. -

"Community opponents of these policies will be left crying in the wilderness, Representatives of Australia's wealth creating private sector are hopelessly outnumbered on EPAC by a Labor bloc more concerned with wealth redistribution than wealth creation. They are oblivious to the truism that you cannot redistribute wealth

before you create it.

"Large sections of the community, in particular the politically unorganised, are not to be represented on EPAC at all. This hypocritical yet deliberate disregard for the opinions of the vast majority of Australians has nothing to do with consensus.

.It is time the community realised that EPAC and economic Summits which are restricted to big interest groups, in particular Labor groups, are more reminiscent of the Corporate State than the concept of a consultative democracy.

"If the Government believed in consensus it would have continued the extensive pre-Budget consultations with community groups which were a feature of the previous Government. Yet not even EPAC will have an opportunity

to provide significant input into this year's Budget, because by the time it is established the Budget process will have been completed."

12 July 1983