PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA
WEDNESDAY, 7 OCTOBER 2020
SUBJECTS: Morrison Government’s Trillion Dollar Debt; unemployment; superannuation.
STEPHEN JONES, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: With a record Budget deficit of 213 billion dollars, this is the biggest budget deficit since World War Two. Adding to government debt, Scott Morrison is now the one trillion-dollar man. With that amount of money being splashed around you'd expect to put a big dent in unemployment. Between now and Christmas unemployment goes up and it stays up for unacceptably too long.
You’d think with unemployment increasing between now and Christmas the Government would have made provision in its Budget for the future of unemployment benefits. Sadly, it's not. They're set to bounce back to $40 a day in from Christmas. This is an appalling Christmas present for all of those people are going to lose their jobs between now and Christmas.
There is lots of money being splashed around. Unfortunately, a whole heap of the stuff that's been announced by the Government in last night's Budget is re-announcements of projects that are already on the book. We're very, very sceptical about these big announcements actually being followed through, because we know that for each and every one of the last four years the Government's made big promises about spending on infrastructure and hasn’t hit the mark in any one of those years. In fact, billion-dollar under-spends in each of their infrastructure announcements each and every year.
I also something about superannuation. For all of the last 12 months, Government backbenchers have been running around briefing every man in their dog that they're going to use this Budget to take an axe to Australia's superannuation system. Well, they got a memo from Australia that Australians value their superannuation and it appears that they’ve called a truce. But they're now looking at the back door. They're putting in place a new set of mechanisms. We want to work with the government, with the industry, to ensure that Australians have a high-performing system, and they don't pay a cent more in superannuation fees then they need to. But we're incredibly sceptical about everything the government does in this area. Let's not forget that it's early release superannuation scheme has opened the door to crime and fraud and millions of dollars’ worth of workers superannuation has been stolen from them because of sloppy administration and an ill-conceived scheme.
The Government's admitted that it scheme was poorly administered and ill-conceived because they've had to provision 13 million dollars in this Budget to a crime taskforce to try and track down those Mobsters have stolen Australia's superannuation. This is an admission that their scheme was ill thought through and Australians have got a lot to be very, very sceptical about when it comes to the Government's views on superannuation.