Following the announcement of the 2023-24 Federal budget community and business leaders lined up in the press gallery at Parliament House to give their reactions.
Below are some photos and text from the night.
Innes Willox – Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group
While fiscally prudent, this year’s Federal Budget unfortunately lacks the urgency and imagination required to power the Australian economy through a period of anaemic growth, Innes Willox, Chief Executive of the national employer association, Ai Group, said tonight.
“It offers little to kickstart the structural reforms needed to boost productivity, investment, innovation, job creation and sustainable real incomes growth,” Mr Willox said.
Read full text at the Ai Group website.
AMA President Professor Steve Robson
I’m Steve Robson, Federal President of the Australian Medical Association. Around the country, Australians have understood that our health system is in crisis and that affordable and accessible care with GPs has been very difficult to find and it’s getting worse. So we absolutely welcome to light a lot of the initiatives in this Budget.
Read full text at the AMA site.
National Seniors Australia Chief Advocate Ian Henschke
Henschke’s message was ‘Simpler system’ needed to ‘attract and keep’ seniors in the workforce
Helen Dalley-Fisher, ERA Convenor, said “This budget is a move in the right direction for women – it has its heart in all the right places. This Government seems to understand that we need deep structural change to our economic and policy systems to make real change for women. Although there is much more that could be done, we’re not seeing anything tonight which moves in the wrong direction.”
Read more at the Equality Rights Alliance site.
Dr Nicole Higgins, President of the RACGP
The Royal Australian College of GPs (RACGP) has welcomed the federal Budget as a game changer for GPs, practice teams and the patients they care for across Australia.
RACGP President Dr Nicole Higgins said the Budget is a win for patients.
“Every patient deserves access to high-quality, affordable and accessible general practice care, irrespective of their postcode or income,” she said.
“I commend the Albanese Government for committing to this massive investment in general practice care. We know the problems impacting our health system can’t all be fixed in one go, but tonight’s Budget includes a groundbreaking investment in the health of all Australians by strengthening general practice care. The Government has shown real commitment to strengthening Medicare and rebuilding general practice care for all patients.”
Read more at the RACGP site.
Melissa Donnelly National Secretary of the Community and Public Sector Union
Melissa Donnelly tweeted – 10,800 APS jobs (6% increase) across the APS Big outcomes in NDIA, ATO, Climate Change, Agriculture, DVA and more. After a decade of attacks and cuts to the public service, tonight’s investment will make a real difference.
Australian Conservation Foundation, Chief Executive Officer, Kelly O’Shanassy
Federal Budget 2023-24 contains ‘the good, the bad and the timid’, according to the national environment group, the Australian Conservation Foundation.
“The Albanese government is making good, solid investments in the clean energy revolution with funds to build transmission infrastructure, attract clean capital to Australia and help workers through the energy transition,” said ACF’s CEO Kelly O’Shanassy.
“ACF welcomes the $2bn Hydrogen Headstart program to accelerate the development of Australia’s clean export industry.
Read more at the acf.org.au site.
John Grimes, CEO Smart Energy Council
“Finally genuine action to harness the benefits of renewable energy and grow our economy through investing in Australia’s cutting-edge smart energy industry.”
2023-24 Federal Budget response from John Grimes, Chief Executive, Smart Energy Council:
“We are seeing the first steps on the path to Australia becoming a renewable energy superpower. Tonight the Federal Government has funded the establishment of a renewable hydrogen industry in this country,” said Smart Energy Council Chief Executive, John Grimes.
Read more at Smartengergy.org.au
Rewiring Australia co-founder and chief scientist, Dr Saul Griffith
Rewiring Australia co-founder and chief scientist, Dr Saul Griffith, said this budget is a profound reset of climate and energy policy after a lost decade under the previous government.
“This is Australia’s first electrification budget. It positions us to become a world leader in the efficient electric energy system of the future. It demonstrates federal ministers have worked hard to start the massive shift towards a new energy paradigm across the economy,” Griffith said.
“The electrification budget builds on Australia’s love affair with rooftop solar. It will help households to realise cost savings from substituting expensive gas machines for clean, electric alternatives.“
Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) President Cr Linda Scott
Australian councils have welcomed tonight’s Federal Budget as a solid investment in local government, with councils receiving $3.1 billion in Financial Assistance Grants over the next 12 months.
“For Australia’s 537 councils, $3.1 billion of local government funding is a vital investment in Australia’s productivity, allowing us to employ nearly 200,000 Australians and provide local services in every corner of the nation,” said Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) President Cr Linda Scott.
Read more at the Australian Local Government Association site.
Jo Briskey, National Political Coordinator at United Workers Union
Major Budget measures announced today show the Albanese Labor Government implementing a bold reform agenda to address issues facing low-paid workers in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, United Workers Union said today.
Read more at the United Workers Union site.
Matthew Addison, Chair The Council of Small Business Organisations Australia (COSBOA)
Small businesses play a vital role in the Australian economy, employing millions and generating income for countless individuals and business owners. A healthy small business environment is essential for a vibrant and thriving community. The 2023-24 Federal Budget acknowledges small business, but there is a need for greater focus on empowering them, promoting entrepreneurship and providing enhanced reasons to commence and remain in business.
Read more at the COSBOA site.
Marc Purcell, CEO, Australian Council for International Development
The Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) welcomes the 2023-24 Federal Budget’s measures towards improving Official Development Assistance, describing them as “responsible and sustainable.”
While the Budget contains only modest immediate measures aimed at boosting ODA, ACFID recognises the Government is devoted to sequenced increases of 2.5 percent per year over the longer term from 2026-27 onwards.
“One year in, these measures place Australia’s aid program on stable footing for the future,” said ACFID CEO Marc Purcell.
Read more at the Australian Council for International Development site.
See more political photos at – Rob Keating Photography