Labor’s Approach to Budget and Fiscal Policy – Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry response

17 May 2018 |

The Labor Party’s recognition of the need to pay down debt and for a buffer to be able to respond to international downturns has been welcomed by the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as has the plan to encourage new investment through accelerated depreciation and emphasis on Vocational Education and Training.

However, the reliance both major parties have on increasing revenue rather than reducing spending is of concern.

Responding to Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen’s address to the National Press Club on 16 May on Labor’s approach to budget and fiscal policy, Australian Chamber CEO James Pearson said “the Opposition’s commitment to budget repair is timely and its acknowledgement of the need to protect Australia against international uncertainty is welcome.

“The confirmation of the plan to allow all businesses an immediate write off of 20% of all new investments is recognition of the importance of encouraging business to invest; and the reiteration of support for developing our nation’s human capital including investment in VET, recognises the need to build skills for people and business for the modern economy.

“Business would like to see a commitment to rein in spending; and reduce, not increase, the tax share in order to reach a Budget surplus. There is ample scope to address waste and inefficiencies in spending.

“Personal tax cuts are welcome. Also needed are business tax cuts to help Australian business, large and small, catch up with the pack in an increasingly competitive world. We call on the Opposition to support cuts in business tax, including by honouring the already legislated tax cuts for businesses with up to $50 million turnover.

“Few would argue with the Shadow Treasurer when he says that the best way to grow our economy is to ensure that every Australian has the ability to fulfil their potential, wherever they live.

“We believe that the best way to do that is to encourage the business community to invest, create wealth and employ – so Australians have the jobs, living standards and opportunities to which they aspire.”

Duncan Bremner

Director - Public Affairs and Advocacy

P  |  0448 822 666

E  |  [email protected]

Adam Carr

Director - Economics and Industry Policy

P  |  0428 679 412

E  |  [email protected]

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