Senator the Hon. Mathias Cormann
Minister for Finance
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
Senator for Western Australia
As the Turnbull Government meets in Perth this week, our promise to WA families is that our policies will deliver more jobs and better paid jobs.
Our State has the potential to become the best performing economy in our nation again, where families have the best possible opportunity to be successful and get ahead.
We have all of the necessary ingredients - our natural resources, our optimism and entrepreneurial spirit, strong overseas demand for what we have on offer as a commodity rich and innovative trading economy.
But future success is not inevitable.
We need to ensure we have our policy settings right.
But we can't just pretend that there are easy fixes. We can't fall for the proposition that a tax grab here and a tax grab there, increasing the overall tax burden in the economy and targeting those who are seen to be more successful, will help solve all our individual problems.
History around the world has shown us that the only place Bill Shorten's envy-driven formula leads to, the idea that someone else has to do worse for you to do better, is mediocrity, inferior outcomes and less opportunity for all.
It is a fact that businesses that are successful and growing are able to hire more workers and pay them better wages. But to achieve that we need to be able to attract the necessary investment into our future economic prosperity and success. We need a Federal tax system that maximises opportunities, rewards aspiration and hard work and is as growth friendly as possible. Yes, where all individuals and businesses are required to pay their fair share of tax consistent with our laws, but tax arrangements which also need to be internationally competitive.
That is why we are committed to our plan to reduce the business tax rate for all businesses to 25 per cent by 2026-27.
It will help attract more investment, which improves our productivity, which will help create more and better paid jobs.
We need a welfare system, which looks after those in genuine need but encourages self-reliance and supports people to achieve their potential.
We need to continue to secure better access for our exporting businesses to key export markets around the world.
WA farmers, manufacturers and service providers in particular are seizing the business opportunities on offer from better access to key markets like Japan, South Korea and China.
We are working very hard to secure agreements with Indonesia, India and the European Union.
We need to keep investing in productivity-enhancing, high-quality economic infrastructure.
The Federal Government recently reached an agreement with the McGowan Government on a $2.3 billion infrastructure package for WA creating 6,000 new jobs. We stand ready to do more, in particular through our offer of a City Deal.
We need to leverage our record investment into our national security and defence capability to build an internationally competitive defence industry. We need to ensure that we secure our access to affordable and reliable energy supplies.
This is the agenda the Turnbull Government is focused on and it is an agenda that will deliver more and better paid jobs for WA.
Most politicians, including our competition, will talk about jobs.
The truth is that only the Turnbull Government actually has a genuine plan to deliver stronger growth with more and better paid jobs.
It is a plan based on the deep understanding that jobs are created by successful, profitable businesses.
Shorten doesn't have a plan for growth and he doesn't have a plan for jobs. His plan is to increase burdens on business to make it harder for them to be successful, leading to fewer jobs and less pay. He has a political plan to whip up anger and envy.
His plan to increase the tax burden on our economy is the wrong plan, in particular for families here in WA.
It would lead to less investment when we need more. It would hurt growth, cost jobs and lead to lower wages.
Our State has seen what happened last time when Labor was able to pursue its anti-business agenda out of Canberra. Julia Gillard, Wayne Swan and Shorten gave us the anti-WA mining tax, targeting the iron ore industry in particular.
All West Australians who want to see better opportunity ahead, for themselves and for their families, will continue to support the Turnbull Government's economic agenda.
This is an opinion piece published in The West Australian on 31 July 2017.
Karen Wu - 0428 350 139