Massive infrastructure projects and a renewed push towards
privatisation will be key areas of focus for business following the
announcement of the first federal budget for the Abbott Government
on 13 May 2014.
Sales of government assets will coincide with a $11.6 billion
Infrastructure Growth Package, as the Australian Government pushes
to stimulate the economy and create new jobs to balance the decline
in construction work tied to the resources industry.
Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey said in his maiden budget speech
that the government was delivering a "contribute and build
budget", with big new investments in medical research and
infrastructure, particularly through major road projects.
"If we all contribute now, we will build the equivalent of
eight Snowy Mountain schemes in new infrastructure over the next
decade," Mr Hockey said, while a new $20 billion Medical
Research Future Fund would be created to "find the discoveries
and cures necessary to underpin the health system of the
An analysis by Norton Rose Fulbright Australia reveals
considerable business opportunities for Australian companies as the
government re-engineers the economy to help reduce the size of the
deficit. It also reveals change for the machinery of government
itself, as major shake-ups to agency organisation and the provision
of services and funding were announced.
Much of the media spotlight has focussed on adjustments to taxes
and welfare and cuts to the public service, including a deficit
levy on high-income earners, the closing of dozens of government
agencies and a rise in the fuel tax excise. This is part of what
Prime Minister Tony Abbott described on budget day as "pain
with a purpose".
But there remain a number of key measures that will give
business access to lucrative government-owned assets or involvement
in some of the nation's biggest infrastructure projects.
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