Mark Dreyfus MP

Member for Isaacs
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(03) 9580 4651
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Australia's Economy

Australia’s economy was weak before Covid-19, the bushfires, and the drought.

Yes, Covid-19 has been a massive shock to the economy, but we would have been so much better placed to turn this around had the economy not been so weak under Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg before the pandemic struck.

The more time the government wastes blaming others and picking fights is time lost to the real task of helping people find a job and getting the country out of recession.

Following the election of the Liberal/National Government in 2013, Australia’s economy has gradually weakened under Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull and now Scott Morrison.

In 2019 Australia’s economy recorded its slowest annual growth in more than a decade while the NAB business survey ‘found there had been a broad-based decline in conditions, with key forward-looking indicators pointing to ongoing weaknesses.

Further, National Accounts data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics for 2018 found the economy briefly fell into a per capita recession described by the Reserve Bank of Australia as ‘two consecutive quarters of negative growth in GDP per person’.

Westpac chief economist Bill Evans said at that time “Today’s number indicates, in a per capita sense, the economy went backwards in the last 12 months.”

Shadow treasurer, Jim Chalmers, said: “If the treasurer thinks that the slowest annual growth since the Global Financial Crisis is somehow a good outcome for Australia then he is from another planet”.

On current estimates, a record one million workers are already unemployed, and an additional 400,000 are set to join the jobless queues by Christmas.

Yet the Morrison Government still has no proper jobs plan. Instead, Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg want to wind back JobKeeper, cut wages, cut super, and freeze the pension.

Workers, businesses, and communities across Australia need a plan from the Morrison Government to promote growth, protect and create jobs, support business, and set Australia up for the recovery.