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Thursday, 13 September 2018
Page: 8961

Economy


Mr ALEXANDER (Bennelong) (14:02): My question is to the Prime Minister: Will the Prime Minister advise the House on how the government's plan to keep Australia's economy strong is guaranteeing the essential services Australians rely on?


Mr MORRISON (CookPrime Minister) (14:02): I thank the member for Bennelong for his question and also his work, particularly on urban infrastructure and our cities, where he has been a champion of improving the quality of life, the effectiveness of our cities and the affordability of housing all around the country.

Our plan for an even stronger Australia depends on and is critically supported by our plans to keep our economy strong, because that's how you guarantee the essential services that Australians rely on. We have a legislated plan for $140 billion worth of tax relief for all Australians who are working hard—not just some but all those who are working hard and paying taxes. The Labor Party want to take the $144 billion personal tax relief plan and shrink it by $70 billion, and those electors out there in Wentworth will be looking very carefully at the plans of the Labor Party to increase the taxes paid by hardworking Australians.

The Labor Party want to put their taxes up because they believe some people in Australia need to be punished for other people to be rewarded. We want to see all Australians succeed. We don't want to demonise any Australians for working hard. That's the policy of the Labor Party. We're backing in small business not just with lower taxes but also with cheaper electricity through the policies that we're already pursuing when it comes to default prices, the big stick on electricity companies and supporting investment in new power generation, which we already know from the ACCC will reduce power bills by between $183 and $416 for households and between $500 and $1,500 a year for businesses, particularly small business.

Our plan is about new markets. It's about new industries, particularly the defence industry and the science and technology industries of Australia. It's a plan that's about new infrastructure, including $75 million for the Port of Townsville to ensure that that enormous economic opportunity in North Queensland can be opened up and the jobs will flow, as the jobs are flowing under this coalition government. It's about restoring law and order to the building and construction industry. That is what the Liberal and National parties have been doing. Today 44,000 jobs in August show that our plan is working. A third of those new jobs in the past year are for people over the age of 55. The figure has been revised: in the last financial year, more than 100,000 young people got a job in 2017-18. That's the strongest fiscal year on record and the second-strongest for any 12-month period going back to 2005. Unemployment is down, participation is up and welfare dependency is at lows. (Time expired)