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Labor must retain ABCC.



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Murray Hansen Chief of Staff The Hon Julie Bishop MP Deputy Leader of the Opposition Shadow Minister for Employment, Business & Workplace Relations 0417 886 155

15 July 2008

Labor must retain ABCC

The Rudd Labor Government must not buckle to union pressure and revert to its previous policy of abolishing the Australian Building and Construction Commission.

The ABCC was established on the recommendations of the Cole Royal Commission, which found building unions were engaged in threatening and intimidatory conduct; and widespread illegal and corrupt behaviour.

The ABCC has been an outstanding success, with greater industrial harmony, significantly improved productivity and a significant reduction in unlawful behaviour.

An independent study in July 2007 found the ABCC had resulted in a 1.5 percent boost to Gross Domestic Product, a fall in construction costs of 1.2 percent and a 9.4 percent increase in building industry productivity.

Labor was committed to abolishing the ABCC until early 2007, when it reversed its decision due to pressure from the Coalition and the building sector.

It would be a disaster for the building and construction sector to once again be exposed to the tactics of the CFMEU and other unions.