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Government's economic management

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FROM THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION THE- R T ' HON. B, M. SNEDDEN,'Q.C., M.P. , , ./ · ■ - · ! . CANBERRA -* 29 MAY, 1 9 7 3 . ' ' *


Speaking during the debate on the Appropriation and Supply

Bills in the H o u s e , Mr. Snedden attacked the Labor G o v e r n m e n t 's

economic management deficiencies. , . .

. He said: "The Government has frightened off -foreign

investment in all Sectors and specifically has withdrawn taxation

concessions on mining and oil exploration. It fails to understand

the differences between the speculative and the genuine investment

in the mining s e c t o r . The Minister for Minerals and E n e r g y , Mr.

C o n n o r , certainly has plenty of energy in his condemnation even

though we might be left with all the minerals in the ground*."


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' . ' ; . ' · - . "The Treasurer says he is on top, not on t a p , but

he might finish up in the tip along wLth his policies. At present

the economy is running in a truly mixed fashion. It is mixed in

a sense that' it contains major elements of Liberal Party initiative

and certain elements of Labor Party interference."


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Attacking the Government for its spate of ad hoc unco-ordinated

legislation and the uncertainty that had resulted, Mr. Snedden said·:

"Like Alvin T o i l e r ’s victims of future shock, the people in the

business community are unable in an environment that is u n f a m i l i a r ,

rapidly changing and unpredictable to make a reasonably correct

assessment on which rational behavioar and sound judgment depend."

Outlining the inherent weaknesses in the G o v e r n m e n t 's h a l f ­

hearted attempts to counter inflation, Mr. Snedden stated: 1

"We should hax^e a determined policy to deal with inflation. The

Government should establish the order of priority for its" p r o p o s a l s ,

state the cost of each proposal, indicate the timing for implementation

of them so that the public can be fully informed and may co-operate in

that p r o g r a m m e . . ; .

"A sense of certainty is vital to a country's economy. There

must be a degree ,of economic planning to determine which sectors of.

the economy need assistance. - T h e r e must be a rational use of

incentives to stimulate projects serving the national i n t e r e s t . ,

"The Government should establish a programme to halt price ,

rises and excess wage increases and state guidelines of acceptable

level of increases in wages and prices. . ,

a "The Government must establish responsible attitudes to

public finance, public expenditure, Government wage rates and

c o n d i t i o n s . · it must not be the pace setter. ' The example it

gives will run right through state and local governments and the

business community. '

' "It is important that Australia prospers, not that an ’ / '

ideology triumphs without regard to economic realities."