Budget strikes the right balance
29 March 2022
The 2022-23 Federal Budget contains welcome relief for low and middle income Australians and outlines the challenges ahead as the economy recovers.
Westpac CEO Peter King commended the focus on cost of living through targeted payments, tax assistance and temporary relief on fuel excise.
“With many Australians paying higher prices, this support will make a difference,” Mr King said.
"The country’s finances are in better shape than expected last year with low unemployment and the improved deficit. It's right to help people navigate the higher cost of living at the moment. The assistance being provided to low and middle income earners is very appropriate.
“Just as short-term challenges are addressed, it’s equally important for long-term supply side constraints to be dealt with. With predictions of unemployment below four percent, the Government should continue to focus on increasing participation, especially among women.”
Westpac also welcomes the expansion of first homebuyer assistance schemes.
“These programs have helped thousands of Australians enter the housing market and it’s great to see bipartisan support for the policy and a commitment to expand it even further, including into regional areas," Mr King said.
The budget includes grants for apprentices and support for small businesses to take on trainees.
“Together with major commitments on infrastructure projects across the nation, more work on wage subsidies for apprentices and incentives for businesses to hire them, the budget strikes the right balance between providing much needed short-term assistance and lifting Australia’s long term growth potential.
"The challenge for the years ahead will be to tackle the hard work to chart a path back to surplus and pay down debt," Mr King said.