Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Victorian Liberal Party Issues Briefing

State News

Economic data released last week points to a slowdown in the Victorian economy, with the latest export figures highlighting the state’s decline under the current Labor Government. Shadow Treasurer, Kim Wells has exposed this government’s poor record on exports, which have stagnated over the last 2 years in comparison to other states. In fact, the 0.3% fall in exports in the June quarter was the third straight fall – compared to a national rise in exports over the quarter of 2.7%. The Victorian export sector has continued to suffer under almost a decade of Labor, with Victoria’s share of national exports shrinking dramatically since 1999. In other areas too, Victoria’s economy is underperforming, consumer confidence is down 0.4% and business investment has slowed, with growth in this sector almost half what it was last year.

To read more of Shadow Treasurer, Kim Wells’ analysis of latest economic click on the links below:

Victorian Households Doing it Harder
Brumby and Lenders Backflip on Economic Growth
Victorian Exports Slump

More evidence of the Brumby Labor Government’s poor management of major projects and the states finances has come to light recently. The departure of the Chairman of the Victorian Funds Management Corporation (VFMC), Labor-mate Mike Fitzpatrick, means that 5 senior figures have quit the board of the VFMC in the last 12 months. Coupled with this mass exodus of board members, it has also been revealed that the fund, which offers funds management services to the Victorian public sector, recorded an unprecedented $4.2 billion decline in assets in the last 12 months – over the same period the Federal Government’s Future Fund grew by $652 million.
But poor financial management isn’t the only problem facing the government; questions also continue to be raised over Labor’s handling of major projects following revelations that the company contracted to develop the technology has been given a $20 million payment for a system which is already millions of dollars over budget and running more than a year behind schedule. When questioned over the payment, whose existence was only discovered after an FOI request, the Public Transport Minister, Lynne Kosky was unable to explain what the $20 million was for. The MYKI ticketing system is now expected to commence some time in 2010, at a cost to taxpayers of more than $1 billion.

More information on the Coalition’s response to these issues can be found by clicking the links below:

VFMC Chairman Quits Following Fund’s $4.2 Billion Loss in Value
Brumby Repays Kamco $20 Million for Incomplete, Late MYKI

Federal News

The Coalition’s record of strong financial management was highlighted in the latest National Accounts data. The Australian economy continues to grow thanks to the reforms undertaken by the previous government, which helped not only to wipe out $96 billion worth of Labor debt but also helped Australia record an unprecedented period of growth. This good work however is being jepordised by the economically irresponsible policies of the current Rudd Labor Government. Policies which have seen Labor raid the budget surplus to establish “Infrastructure Funds”; to help pay for projects the Labor State’s refused to deliver. While the latest economic figures show an overall growth in the nations GDP, the June quarter results highlight a slowing of the economy and GDP growth under Labor. This slowdown can only be countered with responsible economic management, and this is something the Labor Government has so far failed to deliver.

Consumer confidence has fallen for the first time in more than a decade, and Australia now ranks second lowest in the OECD when it comes to consumer confidence. Following months of talking the economy down, the Prime Minister and the Treasurer have succeeded in spooking the Australian public into spending less and this has impacted on the performance of the national economy. Labor’s flawed economic tactic of talking up the “inflation problem” has helped contribute to this fall in consumer spending. It’s time for the government to stop playing political games with the economy and focus on continued strong economic growth across all sectors.

To find out more about the latest economic figures and their effects on the nation, click on the links below:

June Quarter 2008 National Accounts
Consumer Confidence Second Lowest in OECD

Labor’s flawed policies are not constrained to economic policy, in other areas cracks are starting to appear for the Rudd Government. In Industrial Relations, it has been revealed that since coming to power late last year there has been an 800% increase in strike action. While the previous Coalition Government managed to deliver a fall in industrial strike action to levels not seen since 1913, after less than a year in office, Labor has presided over a period that has seen the rate of strikes double in every quarter since the election. This increase in strikes has the potential to cost the national economy millions of dollars in lost production. At a time when business sectors such as manufacturing are already faltering, the national economy cannot afford to deal with policies that have a negative effect on growth.

800% Increase in Working Days Lost to Strike Action

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