The Albanese Labor Government increasingly looks to be asleep at the wheel when it comes to assisting the needs of Ukraine.
After seeking assistance from the Minister for Trade and Tourism Don Farrell a Ukrainian-Australian organisation received a dismissive response from Treasury in return.
The request asked the Albanese Government to implement a double tax agreement (DTA) between Australia and Ukraine, an agreement not currently shared by our two countries.
Without a DTA Australian companies could be discouraged and penalised should they wish to invest and assist with the rebuilding of Ukraine when the time comes.
In its response Treasury made extraordinary claims of its resourcing being ‘fully deployed’ and saying the ‘scope does not exist to add Ukraine to the program’.
In Labor’s May Budget over $860 million in additional resourcing was delivered for Treasury and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The Albanese Government should be doing more to help Ukraine which importantly also includes planning for Australia’s involvement in the peace.
A clear pattern is emerging from this Labor Government that it does not have the agility nor foresight to be proactive, rather opting to be dragged to the table with reactionary solutions that come too late.
It would be in Australia’s and Ukraine’s best interest to have all the mechanisms in place now so, when the time comes, everyone is ready.
We urge the Albanese Government to redirect its misguided priorities, reconsider this request and at the very least commit to exploring all available mechanisms that will assist Ukraine.