Joint media release - Labor must restore what it has cost Australians

Monday, 29 April 2024

Two years of Labor’s failed policies and wrong priorities have left Australians worse off.

In these uncertain economic times, Anthony Albanese and Jim Chalmers will fail Australians yet again unless the Budget focuses on a back to basics economic agenda that:

  1. Restores our standard of living and tames inflation by taking pressure off the prices of essentials and delivering affordable energy for families and business.
  2. Restores prosperity and creates opportunity for all Australians so small businesses are rewarded for their effort, and young Australians have the chance to own a home.
  3. Restores Budget discipline and honesty, including re-introducing the Coalition’s fiscal guardrails, a tax-to-GDP cap and delivering a structural surplus not a windfall surplus.

Over the past two years of the Albanese Labor Government, family budgets have been smashed by higher prices, higher mortgage repayments and higher taxes.

Australia is in a GDP per capita recession, with living standards having collapsed by 7.5% - thousands of dollars for the average household.

Soaring energy prices have made it difficult for families to pay the bills, while businesses are crippled by everyday costs.

Business insolvencies are at a record high, and many small business owners are paying themselves last, if at all, to keep their doors open – while Labor’s bad workplace laws and excessive red and green tape will only make things worse.

Labor has fuelled the housing and rental crisis with unprecedented immigration at a time when housing approvals are at a 12 year low.

Australians deserve a government that’s focused on practical measures to tackle these problems. We need a back‑to‑basics economic agenda, not ideological crusades.

Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor said that after two years, Anthony Albanese and Jim Chalmers have done nothing to ease the pain Australians are feeling.

“Under Labor, hard working Australians have been hit by higher prices, higher mortgage repayments and higher taxes. Labor keeps offering band aid solutions - they need to tackle the source, not just the symptoms.

“Labor’s wasteful spending and failing policies have just made the situation worse. Australia needs an economic plan that restores our standard of living.

“The Prime Minister and Treasurer keep saying Australians have never had it better. They couldn’t be more out of touch.

“Bracket creep and commodity windfalls are delivering windfall surpluses, not structural ones. That isn’t fiscal responsibility and it is not good budget management. Labor is taking from family budgets to bolster its own.

“Australians deserve a government that manages the budget well to secure the prosperity of future generations. This requires growing the economy faster than government spending, while keeping a speed limit on taxes. Australians are not getting that under Labor. ”

Shadow Finance Minister Senator Jane Hume said it’s time for Labor to show genuine fiscal restraint to deliver real cost of living relief for Australians.

“Labor spent an additional $209 billion in its first two Budgets alone and in spite of this, Australians are actually worse off than they were two years ago.

“The only way for Labor to sustainably take pressure off Australian families and businesses is to get inflation under control, and the best way to do that is to rein in Labor’s limitless appetite to spend.

“Until we see a real economic plan from Labor to restore productivity, tame inflation and grow the economy, then Australians will continue to face an uncertain economic future.”