12 May 2015
Transcript - #2015095, 2015

Doorstop interview, Canberra

TREASURER:

The Budget is actually going to be focused on the issues that matter to Australians. We are focused on strengthening the Australian economy, giving people the opportunity to get ahead, to have a go. Market expectations are for a Budget deficit of around $40 to $41 billion, we're going to beat that and we're going to beat it every year. We're very focused on doing, we’re very focused on doing what is right for the Australian people, to give people the chance to get ahead. Now, we're sticking to our plan. Our plan, which last year was focused on strengthening the bottom line, importantly building enough resilience into the Australian economy so that it can cope with whatever head winds might come along. The last 12 months we've seen significant challenges facing the Australian economy. The last 18 months we've had to write off $90 billion of expected revenue, but yet we are still on a credible trajectory back to surplus. In fact the trajectory is no different to that that I announced at the end of last year. And we're doing that despite all the different head winds. So this is delivering on what we've all been saying. It's responsible, it's measured and it's fair and it's going to be a big help for Australia's small businesses and Australian families.

JOURNALIST:

Treasurer, are you saying that the deficit will come in at figures projected in MYEFO?

TREASURER:

You will wait and see tonight but we are - we're going to do better than market expectations. A sensible economist.

JOURNALIST:

How can we judge the success of this Budget? By opinion polls? The unemployment rate? Or any other measure or all of the above?

TREASURER:

Well, it will be judged by people on the basis of whether it is responsible, measured and fair and whether it is going to help to drive economic growth, help to stimulate the Australian economy but at the same time have a credible path back to surplus.

JOURNALIST:

Who will benefit from a tax cut in this Budget?

TREASURER:

Well, just wait and see.

JOURNALIST:

No, no, sorry, it's just in the paper that sole traders and small businesses, can you give us more detail, please?

TREASURER:

What you will see is that we are being very fair and that we are focused on in particular, helping small business to get ahead, to have a go.

JOURNALIST:

Why can't you provide the details?

TREASURER:

This is a Budget that focuses on helping Australians have a go.

JOURNALIST:

What is your favourite part of the Budget? What do you think your signature is? The jewel in the crown that will help voters, taxpayers the most?

TREASURER:

This is about giving people the chance to have a go. This represents the values of the nation. This Budget is about not following the path of Labor, about increasing taxes, but about giving Australians back some of their taxes and importantly, about giving Australians the opportunity to invest, to build a stronger and more prosperous nation. This is a Budget that is the right Budget for these times.

JOURNALIST:

Treasurer, what do you say to employers who are now considering pulling their own PPL schemes because your Government is now discouraging them from…

TREASURER:

That's ridiculous, that’s just plain ridiculous. In they have a PPL scheme in place now, then they're doing it for all the right reasons. If they're taking it away they're doing it for all the wrong reasons.

JOURNALIST:

It's a disincentive for women who could get a top up.

TREASURER:

No, it isn’t. It's no disincentive.

JOURNALIST:

Where are the offsets coming from?

SELFIE GIRL:

Hello. Can I please have a selfie?

TREASURER:

Sure.

SELFIE GIRL:

Yes!

TREASURER:

I don’t want to feel like Kevin Rudd here [laughter]

SELFIE GIRL:

Thank you so much. Good luck with everything tonight.

TREASURER:

Thank you. It wasn't a set up [laughter]. Never met her before in my life.

JOURNALIST:

Proposal from the last Budget can we expect to see you take that proposal to this Budget…

TREASURER:

Sorry, what was that?

JOURNALIST:

The earn and learn proposal, the dole changes from the last Budget, can we expect to see that proposal in this Budget or a significantly changed version?

TREASURER:

You’ll see a changed version of that.

JOURNALIST:

In what way?

TREASURER:

You’ll see it tonight.

JOURNALIST:

Where are you going to find the offsets for 1.5 per cent business tax extension?

TREASURER:

I know you're very excited about the Budget, so am I because it's great for Australia. I don't want to take away the usefulness of the lockup…

JOURNALIST:

This is a bit patronising Treasurer to come out and not give us any details…

TREASURER:

I just did, Latika if you listen to my words carefully I actually gave you a good steer on where the Budget deficit is going and it's improving every year and it's better than market expectations.

JOURNALIST:

Under $40 billion?

TREASURER:

Okay, thank you.