Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls did a good job of dampening expectations for this year’s Queensland Budget yesterday:
While the Government is rightly investigating asset sales, it should (and I expect it is) also rigorously review its expenditures in areas where government support is not compelling, such as assistance to industry (a.k.a. corporate welfare), including to tourism, agriculture and the film industry, for example. The most recent estimates of Queensland Government industry assistance (at around $850 million in total) appears to be from the Productivity Commission but unfortunately the estimates, which are for 2008-09, are a bit old now (see chart below). Queensland Treasury should make it a priority to produce up-to-date figures to inform the Government and the Queensland community.
I’ve previously commented on the Productivity Commission’s estimates of State industry assistance:
Previous relevant posts of mine include: