Scott Morrison’s economic leadership is “nowhere to be seen” despite the nation crying out for a plan of attack, Shadow Treasurer Jim Chalmers says.
In a scathing attack on the government’s economic credentials, the Labor frontbencher hit out at the prime minister for being “unwilling and unable” to provide leadership as the coronavirus and bushfires take a stranglehold on the economy.
“In challenging times like this the country is crying out for economic leadership and crying out for an economic plan and so far, the prime minister has been unwilling or unable to provide either of those things,” Mr Chalmers told Sky News.
The global impact of the coronavirus, paired with the hit from the summer of bushfires, has put the government under pressure, with it’s promised budget surplus almost all but confirmed to be gone.
But Mr Chalmers said the impacts are only exacerbating “longstanding problems” within the economy.
“The economy was quite weak before the coronavirus hit, even before the fires hit, over this very difficult summer. The treasurer, unfortunately, wants people to forget that growth was already slowing, and wages were already stagnant,” he said.
The Labor frontbencher said while he was still awaiting the “full sense” of the information Treasury has given to Josh Frydenberg, it appears the government will fail its own test.
“The surplus is a test Josh Frydenberg and Scott Morrison asked to be judged on. It remains to be seen if they will fail this test,” Mr Chalmers said.
When asked if Labor would support stimulus measures expected from the government, Mr Chalmers told Sky News his party would consider it was a “good” plan.
“If the government comes forward with a plan specifically … we will obviously look at that and we will support it, if it is good,” he said.