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Tuesday, 27 February 2018
Page: 2056

Economy


Mr EVANS (Brisbane) (14:02): My question is to the Prime Minister. Will the Prime Minister update the House on how the government's economic plan is creating jobs, supporting small and family businesses, and reducing the burden on families, including in my electorate of Brisbane? Is the Prime Minister aware of any alternative approaches?


Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:02): I thank the honourable member for his question. As the honourable member knows, and as his constituents in the electorate of Brisbane know, the government's economic plan has delivered: 403,000 jobs in the last year, the largest number of jobs created in our history; 16 consecutive months of jobs growth; and 1,100 jobs a day last year. And we're delivering this because of our commitment to enterprise—to Australian business, to the incentives we've given to Australian family owned businesses, small and medium businesses—to invest. And when they invest you get more employment, you get more jobs.

We know that the opposition does not have a single policy to create one job. What we do know—

An opposition member interjecting

Mr TURNBULL: I hear a note of dissent. We'd love to know what it is. They shouldn't keep it a secret; they should let us know what their plan is to create jobs, because they haven't shared it with anybody else. The Leader of the Opposition wants to increase taxes on the very businesses that employ the majority of Australians in the private sector—that is, business where we have reduced taxes, businesses with turnovers up to $50 million a year. These are not huge corporate giants; these are not massive multinationals. These are overwhelmingly small and medium Australian family owned businesses. They employ most of the private sector workforce. The Leader of the Opposition wants to put the tax up on those companies and those businesses. And we know what will happen. They'll invest less and they'll employ less. He has a plan for higher taxes—$165 billion—and we know that that will have the effect of reducing investment and employment.

But it goes further than that. We have now seen him exposed doing the bidding of the CFMEU. In October last year, he told striking CFMEU workers that Australia's industrial relation laws were—and I use his term—'like a cancer'. That is a remarkable description, given that these laws—the Fair Work Commission, in particular, and the Fair Work Act—were introduced by Labor. What did he say about the Fair Work Commission at the time, in December 2008? He said:

This legislation aims to create workplaces where our children will do better, not worse, than we used to and in which prosperity expands and embraces us all.

Now he calls it a cancer.

Speaking of children, he does this at the behest and in the presence of people who attacked workers who are going to work— (Time expired)