Joyce: Rudd Expects Miners To Pay Off The Debt

20 May

Media Release – Senator Barnaby Joyce, 19 May 2010:

Senator Barnaby Joyce, whilst on his “Straight Talking Tour” in Deniliquin said, “It was interesting to read the answer given yesterday to a question I asked on notice at the Senate Standing Committee on Economics in February as to what our debt position is.”

In 2008, there were six countries in the OECD that had higher net foreign debt as a proportion of GDP than Australia. These countries are Iceland (355 per cent of GDP), Portugal (72 per cent of GDP), Hungary (72 per cent of GDP), Greece (68 per cent of GDP), Spain (66 per cent of GDP) and New Zealand (60 per cent of GDP). In the same year, Australia’s net foreign debt amounted to 56 per cent of GDP. Around 10 per cent of Australia’s net foreign debt is held by the public sector. In the US, around 64 per cent of its net foreign debt is held by the public sector while in Greece, the public sector holds more than 100 per cent of the stock of net foreign debt.

“I also note that our Commonwealth gross public debt has gone from $139.182 billion to $141.282 billion in the last week. In addition to this is the fact that the aggregate borrowing of the states’ non-financial public sectors is expected to be $164 billion in 2009-10. There is also the money owed by entities such as utility companies that have borrowed money to pay state so-called ‘dividends’. As these debts do not come under the government sector financial reporting, who knows how much they owe.

Are we to believe that this government with their current track record has the capacity to fix things up over the next three years?

The Labor government solution is to go to the only section of the community that is making good money and to impede them on the capacity to pay off the debt. Australia has to maintain the vibrant integrity of its mining sector especially if the global economy starts to peel off through the ructions that are currently being seen in Europe. A resource tax would have to be the most foolish decision that a government could make at this point of time in global economics.

The Labor Party members have to ask themselves one question. If the mining sector is not bringing in money to our nation, and the agricultural sector, which they have managed to tie up with green and red tape, is not bringing in the money, then where exactly are our export dollars going to come from? Export dollars underpin the service industry where the vast majority of Australians work. You may not work in an export industry, but your pay depends on them.

In simple terms, if no money turns up on the table from export dollars, there is no money to pass around the table to reflect our GDP and ultimately to pay the debt on what is one on the most indebted nations on earth.”

More Information- Jenny Swan 0746 251500 / 0438 578 402

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