Business

Howard, Rudd squandered mining boom

“The Howard Government gave at least $25 billion away in tax cuts and concessions, on everything from fuel excise to voluntary superannuation contributions."
“The Howard Government gave at least $25 billion away in tax cuts and concessions, on everything from fuel excise to voluntary superannuation contributions." Scott Powick

AT LEAST $75 billion in mining revenue was squandered by the Howard and Rudd governments, with new research finding it funded tax cuts, the fuel excise and even voluntary superannuation contributions, according to independent research group Per Capita.

In its After the Party report released this week, Per Capita charted how the money from digging up Australia was spent before the global financial crisis hit hard.

The authors of the report estimated that Australia was blessed with $180 billion beyond long-term budget projections at the time.

"What did we do with this bounty? Just over half of the windfall, $105 billion, was used by the Howard and Rudd Governments to shore up the fiscal position of the Commonwealth," it stated.

"We paid off $36 billion of sovereign debt and put $69 billion into long-term savings funds. This was the responsible course of action."

But the leftover $75 billion was described as a "lost opportunity" that could have delivered everything from high-speed rail on the east cost, hundreds of thousands of trade cadetships or supplied solar power to the mining industry.

"The Howard Government gave at least $25 billion away in tax cuts and concessions, on everything from fuel excise to voluntary superannuation contributions.

"It used another $50billion on inflated spending programs and various cash handouts, from the baby bonus to the First Home Owners' Grants.

"These costs were ongoing, leaving Australia in a tough position when the world suddenly changed during the GFC.

"The combination of tax cuts and spending growth left Australia ill-prepared for a change in economic circumstances.

"Most of the tax and spending changes were presented to voters as permanent benefits."

Topics:  economy, john howard, kevin rudd, mining boom



Not my family, never my child

Lean how to get out of the repetitive cycle of violence.

Working to make homes a safe haven again

Family shares heartache of young Mackay man's suicide

Reece Rebetzke with his girlfriend Vanessa Shelley

Everyone left behind feels 'guilty'

Local Partners

Jay Z signs two-year movie and TV deal

Rapper Jay Z

Rapper Jay Z has signed a television and movie deal

Nowhere to Hyde: Matt Nable is Australia's man in demand

Matt Nable stars as Detective Gary Hyde in the TV series Hyde & Seek.

NABLE returns to the small screen amidst busy film work.

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E7: Manifest review

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E6: Suckas Need Bodyguards review

Rosario Dawson and Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E5: Just To Get A Rep review

Mahershala Ali, centre, in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Marvel's Luke Cage S1E4: Step In The Arena review

Mike Colter in a scene from the TV series Marvel's Luke Cage. Supplied by Netflix.

*WARNING: spoilers if you haven't seen Marvel's Luke Cage*

Beach-side real estate starts at $85k on Fraser Coast

HERVEY BAY REAL ESTATE: You can buy this townhouse in Scarness for under $300k.

Live your beach-living dream locally.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Developers boost confidence in Bundaberg property market

Slow and steady growth has always been Bundaberg’s way

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual