Labor breaks key election promise

12 Jun 2015 9:00 AMJohn-Paul Langbroek

Queensland Labor has admitted they will break a key election promise and increase debt, which will leave the next generation of Queenslanders paying more.

Deputy Premier Jackie Trad and Treasurer Curtis Pitt have both confessed Labor will have to increase debt to invest in infrastructure projects.

Shadow Treasurer John-Paul Langbroek said this was at odds with key promises made to the people of Queensland in the lead-up to the 2015 election.

“Labor was unequivocal during the election campaign, promising to pay down debt, each and every year going forward,” he said.

“There were no ifs or buts.  Paying down debt was one of Labor’s five fiscal principles.

“Labor’s economic and fiscal strategy actually stated their debt reduction forecasts were ‘conservative’.

“Now the Treasurer and the Deputy Premier have admitted they will need to borrow more money to invest in infrastructure.

“This begs the question – was the Treasurer purposely misleading Queenslanders during the election or was he simply oblivious to the fact his budget strategy doesn’t stack up?

“No matter how you spin it, more borrowing means more debt and more debt means either reduced services or higher taxes for Queenslanders in the long term.”

Mr Langbroek said Labor also promised during the election campaign to deliver a surplus, to maintain ownership of assets, to not increase taxes and to target a return to the AAA credit rating.

“I’ll be surprised if Labor delivers on any of these commitments,” he said.

“During the election Labor made a lot fanciful promises they’re now realising they are unable to keep and they’re now trying to quietly back away from them.

“When asked in Parliament the Treasurer couldn’t even rule out transferring ownership of government businesses, despite this promise being the key plank of Labor’s election campaign.

“Labor’s record of reckless financial management got Queensland into an $80 billion debt mess.

“Queenslanders deserve better than a Labor Government with a one-track mind, fixated on debt.”

 

JACKIE TRAD QUOTES:

"Our determination was to pay down debt and that's exactly what we'll be doing through our election commitment and through state budget," she said.

"If there is a need to borrow for infrastructure it will be done in an absolutely responsible way."

 

CURTIS PITT QUOTES:

"We're certainly not looking to go on a borrowing spree whatsoever."

"At the same time we recognise the economy has to have some kind of injection to help boost employment in this state."

 

LABOR’S ECONOMIC AND FISCAL STRATEGY – PAGE 10:

 

QUEENSLAND TREASURY ADVICE IN 2012 FISCAL REFORM BLUEPRINT:

“The critical fiscal issue facing Queensland in the immediate future is the high and rising level of State debt.”

“Treasury’s medium term fiscal analysis serves to demonstrate that a long and sustained period of restorative fiscal measures and unprecedented fiscal discipline is required to restore the State’s fiscal position, stabilise the debt to revenue position and return the State’s AAA credit rating.”

“The issue is the forward projections and the borrowing implied by those projections makes Queensland highly vulnerable to shocks and is contrary to the principles of intergenerational equity.”

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