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




Rudest map: What Northern Rivers place names made the cut?

Bullshit Hill is on Australia's rude map.

We still can't believe that Blue Knob isn't on the list

Lismore roadworks to disrupt bridge traffic

Roadworks

Watch out for changed traffic conditions this weekend

Priscilla is coming to Brunswick Heads

Northern Rivers gender illusionist Maude Boate (Michael Gates) promoting the upcoming screenings of Priscilla Queen of the Desert at the Brunswick Picture House.

Maude Boate will host two special screenings

Latest deals and offers

Priscilla is coming to Brunswick Heads

Northern Rivers gender illusionist Maude Boate (Michael Gates) promoting the upcoming screenings of Priscilla Queen of the Desert at the Brunswick Picture House.

Maude Boate will host two special screenings

Kanye West gets 'free reign' at VMAs

Kanye West has been let off the leash for the VMAs

Robbie Williams sings at manager's funeral

Robbie Williams and Lamar sang at the funeral of their manager

Twice as much Troy will please country music lovers

CATCH HIM WHILE YOU CAN: Singer Troy Cassar-Daley plans to take some time off to spend with family next year.

TROY Cassar-Daley is releasing a new album and book.

Top 5 in local entertainment this week

No Caption

Top 5 events in local entertainment this week

Fallskaraoke: Sing for your tickets

The Jezabels are an Australian indie rock band formed in Sydney in 2007. They consist of Nik Kaloper on drums and percussion, Samuel Lockwood on lead guitar, Hayley Mary on lead vocals and Heather Shannon on piano and keyboard.

The 2016/17 Falls Music & Arts Festival line-up has landed!

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m