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Thursday, 28 June 2018
Page: 6816


Mr BURKE (Watson—Manager of Opposition Business) (14:29): My question is to the Prime Minister. Yesterday the Prime Minister visited Universal Trusses and spoke about the company in question time. Given the company is owned by the president of the Canberra Liberal Party, is the Prime Minister also planning to visit similarly independent businesses like MB Turnbull Pty Ltd, Turnbull and Partners Holdings or Turnbull and Partners Pty Ltd?

Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:29): I thank the honourable member for his question. It says a lot about the character of the Labor Party that they are attacking a family business, a longstanding Canberra business, and they are attacking it because one of their directors is a member of the Liberal Party. Maybe they all are. And what's wrong with that? It's not an offence. It's not an offence to be a member of a political party. Do you know what? Here's the thing. We believe in free enterprise, we believe in business, we believe in family business and we believe in jobs.

Universal Trusses is a great example of a hardworking Australian family business that would be hit by the Labor Party with higher taxes were Labor to get into government. They would be in exactly the same position as so many Australian businesses recently visited by the Leader of the Opposition. Milltech Martin Bright is a steel manufacturer. Their revenue is such that they will be getting the benefit of the tax relief in this coming financial year. So will Victoria Wool Processors, the Northern Oil Refinery and Northern Oil Advanced Biofuels, and Jako Industries in Fremantle, which the Treasurer was talking about. The reality is there are hundreds of thousands of businesses across Australia that, under Labor's new captain's call assault on family business, will have their viability threatened by Labor wanting to put up their tax. It's extraordinary.

In the most competitive global environment you can imagine, this is a time when we want businesses to have a go, to invest, to employ and to be like aussieBum and export and take on the whole world with their products, be ambitious, invest and grow. We want them to do all those things. What is the message the Labor Party has for them? 'We're going to increase your tax'—that is Labor's message. Higher taxes, less investment, lower productivity, fewer jobs and lower wages—that is what the Leader of the Opposition will be traipsing around the countryside delivering, going from one business luncheon to another, walking in to applause, no doubt, from all those people delighted, so he hopes, to be enjoying what the deputy leader describes as the 'privilege' of paying higher and higher tax.

We know that Australians want to keep more of the money they earn. Australian businesses want to invest the money that they make in their businesses, and that's what they're doing. That's why we have record jobs growth, and the greatest threat to that jobs growth is sitting opposite me today.