Morrison’s grim warning: Five-year rebuild for economy

Repairing Australia’s economy from the devastation the coronavirus has wreaked will be a five-year task, the Prime Minister has warned his colleagues.

Jun 10, 2020, updated Jun 10, 2020
Scott Morrison has extended his lead as preferred PM in the latest NewsPoll.

Scott Morrison has extended his lead as preferred PM in the latest NewsPoll.

But Scott Morrison is sticking to his guns ahead of a fortnight of parliament, telling the coalition joint party room to brace for difficult decisions.

“The situation will take us outside of our comfort zone sometimes but we need to look to our philosophical principles,” he told MPs as they met on Tuesday.

Labor is gearing up for closer scrutiny of the JobKeeper scheme as parliament returns after the government announced one sector – childcare – will lose the wage subsidy in July.

That news came three days after Morrison told reporters the JobKeeper program had been set up until the end of September “and people can count on that”.

“This government is botching up the recovery that is needed to get us back into the black,” Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese told reporters at a childcare centre near Parliament House in Canberra.

“We are in an economic recession for the first time in 30 years. That requires a coherent and considered response. We are not getting it.”

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg told colleagues the government could not maintain income support indefinitely.

The next election, due in 2022, would be a battle over the narrative about the role of government, he said.

“Our opponents see government as a limitless provider; we see government as an enabler.”

Most politicians have returned to Canberra for this sitting of parliament although social distancing measures and strict limits on the number of people in a room remain in place.

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Both chambers will sit from Wednesday to Friday with the usual sitting schedule pushed back a day to make travel arrangements easier following the Queen’s Birthday public holiday.

Top of the government’s agenda is a bill dealing with medicinal cannabis and hemp exports.

New legislation will include powers to ban dodgy carers and service providers from entering the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

Labor frontbencher Graham Perrett will introduce a bill to overturn a Howard-era presumption of equal parental responsibility in family law while Greens leader Adam Bandt is seeking a ban on coal mining and exports.

In the background is a by-election campaign for the seat of Eden-Monaro.


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