Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says Australia’s economy is best-placed to absorb financial shocks, as the International Monetary Fund warns the global economy slows faster than expected.
In a speech in Sydney, outlining the Coalition Government’s economic blueprint, Mr Frydenberg agreed with the IMF about “storm clouds” hanging over the international outlook.
“Persistent trade tensions, high global debt levels, and a contraction in growth in several key economies have changed the global outlook,” Mr Frydenberg told the Sydney Institute.
Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has responded to a warning from the International Monetary Fund about the world economy, saying Australia’s financial stance is strong. (AAP)
“Domestically, the drought in having an impact, the housing market has softened, there are signs that credit growth is being constrained and the pick-up in wages growth remains gradual.”
The IMF downgraded its forecast for economic growth from 3.7 percent to 3.5 percent, as China reported its slowest growth in almost 30 years and the trade wars with the United States start to bite.
But, the Treasurer said the Morrison Government was building “buffers”, pointing to the most recent Reserve Bank monetary statement that said “the Australian economy is performing well, while accepting uncertainty in the outlook for household consumption.
The IMF today warned that the growth in the global economy has slowed faster than expected. (AAP)
“This is where confidence in the housing market is key,” he said.
And he warned against the “punitive” tax policies of Labor.
“Economists and credit rating agencies have raised the potential adverse impacts to the economy that would flow from a hard landing in the housing market.
“What the economy can ill-afford right now are punitive tax policies that would hurt both supply and demand and are completely inappropriate in the current environment.
Mr Frydenberg acknowledged some of the points made by the IMF but pointed towards a Reserve Bank statement referencing the current housing market. (AAP)
“Our economic plan with its focus on growth, productivity, and aspiration and budget repair, takes on an event greater significance as we navigate the currents ahead.”
Mr Frydenberg again promised a budget surplus, on April 2, the first in a decade.
He spoke of the dangers of Labor’s “class warfare” and their “co-conspirators”, the ACTU, that threatened to re-write the economic rule book, and sending a “chill” through every workplace.
“What is not fair is Labor’s $200 billion of new taxes that will hit retirees, homeowners, renters, small business and those aspiring to build a better life for them and their families.”
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