Monthly Archives: May 2013

GST changes should be considered as part of wide-ranging tax and expenditure review

Pat Hession from the Drive program on 630 ABC North Queensland interviewed me this afternoon on the merits of increasing the GST rate and broadening its base to include exempt items such as fresh food. I noted that, from an … Continue reading

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Flood-proofing levy has merit, but funds should go into Consolidated Revenue

Given Queensland’s budgetary challenges, there is merit in the Government’s plan to raise additional money to pay for flood-proofing projects through a special levy, as reported in the Courier-Mail this morning. I would, however, advise against having the money paid … Continue reading

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What’s really happening with Commonwealth payments to Qld for health?

While Commonwealth Health Minister Tanya Plibersek has claimed the Budget gives $1bn extra for Queensland hospitals, Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls is criticising the Commonwealth for cuts to health and other areas of Government. For example, Mr Nicholls presented this table … Continue reading

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Long-term education target unlikely to be met – haven’t we learned from previous unachievable targets?

The National Plan for School Improvement released with the 2013-14 Commonwealth Budget has the potential to signficantly lift educational outcomes across Australia and is therefore one of the positives of this Budget. But I’m skeptical of the Government’s stated ambition … Continue reading

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More signs of slowing growth in resources sector – bad news for Qld budget

Queensland Treasury already made a big downward revision of $1.4 billion over four years in mining royalties in the 2012-13 Mid-Year Fiscal and Economic Review last December, and it may need to shave some more off given the bad news … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Housing, Macroeconomy, Mining | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Despite cost disease, Government can boost public sector productivity

There are several fundamental differences between the public and private sectors, one of which was noted in Sir Peter Gershon’s review of Commonwealth Government ICT use in 2008. On Commonwealth agencies, and I assume the same would apply to State … Continue reading

Posted in Budget, Queensland Government | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Regional Qld made impressive contribution to national economic growth over 2000s

I’m very impressed by the just released Sustainable Australia Report 2013: Conversations with the Future, which was produced by the National Sustainability Council for Sustainability and Environment Minister Tony Burke. The report covers a wide range of environmental sustainability issues … Continue reading

Posted in Gold Coast, Macroeconomy, Townsville | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Qld and WA were on similar growth paths, but Qld got knocked off by GFC

This month’s RBA chart pack contains a nice, informative chart depicting State shares of Australia’s GDP (see below). It shows that, up until the financial crisis in 2008, Queensland, like WA, was increasing its share of national GDP, but stalled … Continue reading

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Barcaldine set to boom with big increase in FIFO workers

Queensland Treasury’s non-resident population projections for the Bowen and Galilee Basins show Barcaldine in Central Queensland is the next regional town that will boom due to an influx of fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) and drive-in, drive-out (DIDO) workers (see chart below … Continue reading

Posted in Mining, Population | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Retail sector adapting to new frugality – big box shopping & affordable luxuries

Australia’s retail sector has had to adapt to the new frugality as a result of the financial crisis, and it appears that, among bricks-and-mortar retailers, only big box stores such as Bunnings have thrived. Yesterday saw the site launch of the … Continue reading

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