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Transcript 19361

Transcript of Joint Doorstop Interview

Photo of Gillard, Julia

Gillard, Julia

Period of Service: 24/06/2010 to 27/06/2013

More information about Gillard, Julia on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 17/05/2013

Release Type: Video Transcript

Transcript ID: 19361


PM: I am absolutely delighted to be in Tasmania with my ministerial colleague Julie Collins and we are here in her electorate of Franklin.

We have had the opportunity today to meet some of the staff and some of the patients at this GP Super Clinic which we delivered here with a $5.5 million Labor Government investment.

It has been the perfect place for us to launch with Medibank anytime Anywhere HealthCare.

What this is about is using out Medicare system to provide rebates so that people can get the health services they need, using new technology, including right across Tasmania, people being able to access specialists whose care they may not be able to get locally.

Access them using the power of new technology and building on the National Broadband Network.

Tasmania is in the absolute forefront of the development of the National Broadband Network.

I'm very pleased to be here at the end of Budget week because in the Government's Budget we have made provision for an $800 million package for Tasmania.

We want to focus on jobs and growth in Tasmania.

Our $800 million package includes $680 million for infrastructure, including half a billion on the Midland Highway and that includes the planning and start of construction to replace the bridge at Bridgewater.

So I'm very pleased to be able to say we are investing again in infrastructure in Tasmania, bringing our total investment since 2008 to $1.9 billion.

As part of this $800 machine Tasmania package, we will be making available $100 million over the next four years for direct investment in jobs.

Now people would have heard me speak before about making provision following the forestry agreement to invest in jobs in Tasmania.

That was to be a $93 million investment over 15 years.

I've decided that Tasmania needs support and it needs it now and I've certainly listened to the representations from my Labor colleagues here in Tasmania, including Julie, about what needs to be done.

So we will bring that money forward and we will add to it. Instead of $93 million over 15 years, $100 million will be invested over four years to bring jobs and growth to Tasmania.

These decisions won't be made remote from Tasmania.

We want to make them in consultation with the local community and we will be asking Jonathan West working with our local members local community members to define priorities for Tasmania.

This builds on top of the new jobs coming because of the NBN.

The new jobs that we have invested in, more than 700 jobs through Vodafone.

We are directly adding to those jobs today, with 70 new jobs through the Officemax call centre in Derwent.

So jobs coming to Tasmania and $100 million package to get more jobs and growth into the Tasmanian economy.

The balance economy of the $800 million package is our investment into the co-operative research centre for work on the Antarctic.

Tasmania is where all of this happens.

It is our gateway to the Antarctic. It is a specialty in Tasmania.

It has brought skills here, it has brought jobs here and we want to keep investing in those skills and those jobs for the future.

So I am very pleased to be here today to outline an $800 million package of support for Tasmanian jobs and growth.

Budgets are about choices and on Tuesday night, as the Government, we outlined our choices for the nation's future.

We put a priority on jobs, on DisabilityCare and investing in our nation's schools.

That's our values, our priorities, making sure that there are jobs today and jobs tomorrow, that we put our children first and that we better support people with disabilities.

Last night the Leader of the Opposition outlined his choices and what he has chosen to do is to take an axe to working people's superannuation and to reduce school funding by more than $16 billion.

These are just the start of the cuts to the bone that the Leader of the Opposition has planned and it is clear that his targets are working people and their families.

The Leader of the Opposition has made those choices clear.

But, of course, there is so much more to come because the Leader of the Opposition is committed to further cuts.

Here in Tasmania, I think people will be very disturbed to hear that the Leader of the Opposition is leaving on the table consideration of increasing the rate of the GST.

Tasmanians already know that the Leader of the Opposition has a plan to rip $600 million of GST out of Tasmania and now he is leaving on the table consideration of increasing the rate of the GST with all of the cost of living problems that that would give Australian families, including here in Tasmania.

I am very happy to take people's questions.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, just on Gonski, Tasmania is yet to sign up, along with other States. To what extent are you willing to compromise and change the principles under which Gonski is allocated in terms of the loadings and so on and to what extent are you not?

PM: We already have the nation's biggest schooling system signed up to our school improvement reforms and that is the State of New South Wales.

Mr Abbott's plan to rip that money away from schools and children would cost New South Wales $5 billion.

We are having good and constructive discussions with the Tasmanian Government on making sure that every school in Tasmania has the resources it needs to get children a great education and we will keep working through those discussions.

But the model is clear and the model is there for all to see.

It is about a school resource standard and loadings so that when children come to school from poorer homes, indigenous children, children with disabilities, children from non-English speaking backgrounds, more is made available to support their education because we know it costs more to get those children a great education.

JOURNALIST: Are you prepared it change that model?

PM: The deal that is on the table is the same deal that was taken by the biggest schooling system in the nation.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, on immigration changes, why shouldn't the Australian Human Rights Commissioner be able to visit detention centres in Nauru and Manus Island? What is there that the government has to hide?

PM: We do make it possible for people to go to detention facilities from time to time. That access is arranged through the Minister for Immigration.

JOURNALIST: So the Human Rights Commissioner can go?

PM: We do make access available. It is one of the changes that we have made from the Howard Government. It is a matter of approaching the Minister for Immigration and making appropriate arrangements.

JOURNALIST: That decision to excise Australia from the migration [inaudible] from the migration zone, that is a contravention of the refugee convention, is it not?

PM: No, absolutely not and I would refer you to the Expert Panel report where this was recommended.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, Tony Abbott says Australians will be $600 better off a week under him. How do those figures stack up for you?

PM: Let us do the adding up for Mr Abbott because clearly he is not doing that adding up right.

Mr Abbott has played clear his choices and what his choices mean is for a 30-year-old male worker who is on the average wage, when they retire, when that person retires they will get $127,000 less to retire on.

What Mr Abbott's figure work means is that schools around the country would be more than $16 billion worse off.

What Mr Abbott's figure work to date means is that people with kids would have the Schoolkids Bonus ripped away from them.

That he would be trying to move money from supporting families with childcare costs into paying for nannies, for families with more money.

Mr Abbott's plans also mean that he has got a very big black hole and would have to put a big burden on the shoulders of working families to pay for his parental paid scheme which is rejected by so many members of his own political party.

Remember, that is just the start.

Mr Abbott from last night's announcements, he is $26 billion down on the bottom line.

He is going to do a lot more cutting and we know from just being at the start of Mr Abbott's cuts to the bone, that the people he has got in his sights are working Australians and their families.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, isn't it a bit much to say that Mr Abbott has left the GST when he said that he has ruled that out in his first term if he gets into government?

PM: I would refer you to Mr Abbott's words and that is not what he has done today.

He has said last night in his speech he would have a comprehensive review of tax reform and during media interviews today he has not ruled out the rate of the GST rising and of course here in Tasmania you know that he has plans to rip $600 million out of your GST.

Every time he goes to Western Australia, he says so.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, how is your budget going to help vulnerable Tasmanian MPs like Sid Sidebottom and Geoff Lyons hang on to their seats?

PM: Our Budget is about helping the people of Tasmania by investing in jobs and growth here in Tasmania, making sure that people have got opportunities for work in Tasmania.

It is about investing in Tasmania's schools, making sure every child gets a great education.

It is about rolling out DisabilityCare here so we do better for people with disabilities and it builds on all of the other work we have done in Tasmania.

It brings our infrastructure investment to $1.9 billion, continues the rollout of the NBN, continues the rollout of our clean energy future which is great for this State of Tasmania.

This clean, green place and of course we are making record provisions for the healthcare services in Tasmania, including standing here in a Super Clinic constructed with Labor Government resources.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, to what extent is the decision to bring forward that $100 million in regional development funds cynical pork barrelling in the lead up to the election?

PM: It is a recognition of economic circumstances here in Tasmania.

As you are aware, there has been a lot of work done on the future of the forestry industry here in Tasmania by the stakeholders who have, many of them been at war, in the forests over a long period of time.

Stakeholders came together and we said that if an agreement could be reached and legislated, then we would support jobs following that agreement.

We said initially we would roll that out over 15 years.

My view of the Tasmanian economy is that investment should be made sooner and so we have made provision to do that and we have increased the investment to $100 million.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, back on immigration, is it still Labor's policy that no children should be held behind wire and if so, what about the children in Manus and in Pontville?

PM: We have made our policies clear following the receipt of the Expert Panel from Angus Houston and Paris Aristotle and Michael L'Estrange.

We said we would accept all of their recommendations, more than 20 of them.

We are implementing those recommendations, other than the ones we have been stopped from implementing by the negativity of the opposition.

JOURNALIST: So that keeps the children behind the wire [inaudible]?

PM: We are making appropriate provision for children and that is dealt with not only by our policies but I would refer you to the Expert Panel report.

JOURNALIST: You say that, Prime Minister, but there are children at Pontville who can't attend schools?

PM: We do seek to make arrangement for children to attend schools around the country.

JOURNALIST: But why are we still make waiting for those children [inaudible]?

PM: We do make arrangements for children to attend school around the country.

Our approach here for first instance detention is that we work through health and security and identity issues and then people are moved into community arrangements.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, Tony Abbott has labelled the Budget a budget emergency. What is your response to that?

PM: Mr Abbott is bringing a very big insight through all of these words to the Australian people about his plans to cut to the bone.

Of course, the Budget that we laid out on Tuesday night is a Budget that has been received by global ratings agencies with AAA ticks.

We are AAA-rated by all three major ratings agencies for the first time in this nation's history under this Government.

So the judgment of the experts is in and its AAA rated.

Mr Abbott is wandering around talking about a Budget emergency.

Well if he says Budget emergency, what that is about is softening you and the community up for more and deeper cuts.

What those words should ring in the ears of Australians when they hear those words Budget emergency from Mr Abbott, they should be asking themselves how much does that mean he is going to cut from my local hospital?

How much does that mean he is going to cut from investment in my roads?

How much does that mean that he is going to cut from the work that Government does to support jobs?

How many people are getting the sack?

That is what those words "Budget emergency" mean from Mr Abbott - cuts to the bone.

JOURNALIST: Didn't he contradict that when he said that some of Labor's savings measures could actually be included if he was in Government?

PM: You will have to ask Mr Abbott about his own contradictions.

We have made responsible savings in order to fund great Labor priorities.

Making sure every child reaches their full potential and that for generations and generations to come our schools are properly funded.

We have made responsible savings so our nation can better look after people with disabilities.

Mr Abbott is not only saying he will take those responsible savings but he will go so much further.

First in his sights, smash people's superannuation.

Second in his sight, rip money out of schools.

People should be asking themselves what is next as he goes about cutting to the bone.

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, can you explain the jobs at the call centre and address... Tasmania's unemployment is 7.4 and it is going up, how grim is that?

PM: We are concerned about making sure that Tasmanians have got the benefit of work.

That is why, working with my Tasmanian colleagues, we announced the arrangement we came to with Vodafone to create more than 700 jobs.

We are here today with the arrangement with Officemax to create 70 jobs and we are here creating the jobs that will flow from $680 million of investment in infrastructure, $100 million directly at jobs and diversifying this economy and the jobs that will be secured through the work of the co-operative research centre.

That is what we are doing, investing in jobs and growth in Tasmania.

JOURNALIST: Gina Rinehart has said that, warned that Australia could be heading for the kind of economic collapse of some of the European nations. What is your response to that?

PM: That is absolute nonsense, absolute nonsense and not backed in by responsible economists and not backed in by the ratings agencies with their AAA rating of the Australian economy.

What that is about, of course, is helping with the softening up campaign for more of Mr Abbott's cuts.

JOURNALIST: [inaudible] with her view who say Governments are using the mining industry as an ATM?

PM: What we are doing is taxing super profits in the mining industry because at the end of the day it is Australians that own the mineral wealth in our grounds, no-one individual.

OK, thank you very much.

Transcript 19361