Published 24 April 2020.
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The Week in Politics
With Parliament in recess the Prime Minister and Treasurer have been taking centre stage out of Parliament House as they update the nation on the latest COVID-19 situation.
The curve is flattening and we now have three weeks to wait and see if restrictions that have drastically changed the lives of Australians will be eased.
Dr. Lowe’s Recipe for Recovery
The Reserve Bank Governor, Dr. Phillip Lowe, gave a speech on Tuesday in which he predicted that output would fall by 10% in the June quarter but will rebound in the September quarter. He predicts that the economy will grow by 6-7% over the next financial year.
But Dr. Lowe doesn’t think that the economy should be left to recover under its own steam and he has recommended an agenda for recovery. He painted a dismal picture of the economy in the short term and indicated that the road to recovery will require a strong response by government and the private sector.
By John McDonnell
Honour the service and sacrifice at home for ANZAC day
Australians are being encouraged to honour the service and sacrifice of our veterans and serving Defence personnel on ANZAC Day from home this year by watching the nationally broadcast Dawn Service from the Australian War Memorial and participating in the RSL’s #lightupthedawn campaign.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said while ANZAC Day will be different this year, with no community commemorative services or marches, we will be doing all we can to honour and commemorate the sacrifice of our Anzacs and thank all those who have served and continue to serve Australia in our defence forces.
$3.8 billion in superannuation funds approved
Yesterday in Canberra when talking about early access to super, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced that the Australian Taxation Office has approved 456,000 applications, totalling $3.8 billion for payment.
The applications will be paid out by the super funds over the next five days with an average withdrawal around $8,000. The Treasurer reminded Australians that those suffering financial hardship due to COVID-19 are able to access up to $10,000 from super in the current financial year and a further $10,000 from 1 July 2020 until 24 September 2020.
The Federal Government to spend $94 million to boost fuel security and establish a national oil reserve
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor announced on Wednesday that the Government is boosting the nation’s long-term fuel security by taking advantage of dramatic falls in global oil prices and building on our historic agreement with the United States to access their Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR).
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann announced today that he had made $94 million in additional funding available to support the Government’s purchase of oil stocks and the leasing of storage capacity in the United States Strategic Petroleum Reserve by using the Advance to the Finance Minister.
Government supporting public interest journalism
The Morrison Government is supporting public interest journalism during COVID-19, with the $5 million Regional and Small Publishers Innovation Fund 2020 Round now open for applications.
Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP (pictured right), said the 2020 Round of the program – administered by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) – has been fast-tracked to assist regional and metropolitan news publishers with the significant challenges they face in the current media landscape and resulting from the public health response to COVID-19.