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‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat

  • May 13 2021
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‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat

By Cameron Micallef
May 13 2021

Short of a big-ticket spending item, the FY21-22 federal budget has underwhelmed, with the opposition labelling it yet another ‘missed opportunity’.

‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat

‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat

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  • May 13 2021
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Short of a big-ticket spending item, the FY21-22 federal budget has underwhelmed, with the opposition labelling it yet another ‘missed opportunity’.

‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat

While the budget contains more than $96 billion in new net spending announced over the next five years, it lacked the same punch as previous budgets without any new key policies. 

Despite the Liberal Party saying this is a sign of economic recovery, the opposition was quick to pounce, questioning whether the government could even deliver these new minor policy announcements after ‘eight years of mismanagement’.

Dubbed the jobs budget, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg unveiled his plan to get an additional 300,000 Aussies into the workforce needed to put pressure on wage growth and eventually lift inflation.

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In total, the government said it will support more than 450,000 new training places to upskill JobSeekers and young people through the key JobTrainer scheme.

“At a cost of $2.7 billion, we will create more than 170,000 new apprenticeships and traineeships,” Mr Frydenberg said.

“Building on the 100,000 new apprentices we have already helped into a job in the first stage of the program.”

Shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers was quick to point out the party’s track record on job creation.

“After their last budget centrepiece JobMaker created just 1,000 of the 450,000 jobs promised, Australians can’t believe any jobs promised in this budget,” Mr Chalmers said.

“For eight long years, this government has overseen record-low wages growth, chronically high underemployment, and it still doesn’t have a credible plan to create secure jobs.”

The Treasurer also said that 10 million Aussies are hundreds of dollars richer following the now announced extension of the low and middle income tax offset (LMITO).

“To secure Australia’s recovery, the budget provides an additional tax cut to more than 10 million low- and middle-income earners,” Mr Frydenberg said on Tuesday evening.

Under the extension, the LMITO – a one-off tax offset worth $1,080 to those earning from $48,000 to $90,000 – will be temporarily retained for the entirety of 2021-22 financial year, costing the budget around $7.8 billion.

The Labor Party heavy hitters went on the offensive, highlighting how the changes to tax policy largely benefit Australia’s wealthy.

“Beyond the hype and the headlines, Australians on modest incomes will only receive a temporary tax break before the election and be dealt a tax hike after it, while the highest-income earners will enjoy a permanent tax cut forever,” Mr Chalmers said.

Another key assumption for the budget is that Australia will be COVID-19 safe through vaccinations, although the number of vaccines estimated is more than five times the current rollout.

According to the budget, Australia will have 200,000 people a day vaccinated from COVID, far exceeding the current pace of 35,000 vaccines currently being delivered.

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese used various media appearances to draw attention to the ‘failed vaccine rollout’.

“But that’s the rollout of the vaccine. There are no vaccines, that’s the problem. They haven’t produced, they haven’t done the planning, in terms of quarantine,” Mr Albanese told Sunrise.

“They haven’t done the planning in terms of producing mRNA vaccines that we should be producing here, right now.

“The vaccine rollout, as you know, has been a debacle.

“They said 4 million people would be vaccinated by March.

“You’ve always got to look at the gap that is there between announcement and delivery,” he explained.

Moreover, Mr Chalmers accused the government of cynically using their eighth budget to pretend to care about issues they have ignored over the last seven budgets.

“Even in the face of a damning royal commission, the aged care package falls short of the commissioner’s recommendations,” he said.

“Just because the recession could have been worse doesn’t mean the recovery can’t be better.

“After eight long years of job insecurity, weak wages growth, neglect and waste, this budget is another missed opportunity to invest in Australians, their jobs and their future,” Mr Chalmers concluded.

‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat
‘More marketing, mismanagement and missed opportunities’ – 2021 budget falls flat
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About the author

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Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

About the author

author image
Cameron Micallef

Cameron is a journalist for Momentum Media's nestegg and Smart Property Investment. He enjoys giving Aussies practical financial tips and tricks to help grow their wealth and achieve financial independence. As a self-confessed finance nerd, Cameron enjoys chatting with industry experts and commentators to leverage their insights to grow your portfolio.

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