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Tuesday, 16 November 1993
Page: 2885

Senator VANSTONE (4.08 p.m.) —I move:

  That the Senate take note of the document.

It is particularly relevant at this time to be looking at this report since the government is saying, `Well, the recession is over and we are coming out of the worst of it.' It is relevant to actually look at what has happened as a consequence of this government's mismanagement of the economy. I recommend this report to anybody who is interested in seeing the consequences of economic mismanagement. It is a very well prepared report, there is a wide range of information available and it is easily identified by the casually interested reader.

  I draw attention to page 45 in the chapter dealing with the causes of bankruptcy. On that page there is a list of the major causes of bankruptcy for business bankrupts. Of the 11 causes listed—including lack of capital, lack of business ability, failure to keep proper books and so on—the one factor which stands out as having a much greater influence than any other on bankruptcy is economic conditions.

  We all know who has the greatest capacity to influence economic conditions. I do not say for one minute that the government is responsible for everything that goes wrong in the nation in terms of the economy. No-one is so stupid to put that proposition. But the federal government has the greatest capacity to influence the economy. The consequence of this mismanagement is that more and more people have been going bankrupt.

  In my state of South Australia bankruptcy has a particular effect on young South Australians. An age profile on page 50 gives an indication of the ages of people in business or not in business who have gone bankrupt. We see that this financial disaster affects the younger portion of the population far more than any other. The figures for the 25 to 34 age group—business people obviously—are very serious. I commend this report to the Senate and anybody who has a particular interest in seeing the consequences of this government's economic mismanagement.