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Transcript 40338

Interview with Triple M Hot Breakfast

Photo of Turnbull, Malcolm

Turnbull, Malcolm

Period of Service: 15/09/2015 to 24/08/2018

More information about Turnbull, Malcolm on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 05/05/2016

Release Type: Transcript

Transcript ID: 40338

Location: Melbourne

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

It’s always an honor to have the Prime Minister of Australia join us live on the radio this morning. Malcolm Turnbull joins us from Canberra. Good morning Malcolm.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah good morning, great to be with you.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

That’s the way. How many interviews do you recon you’ve done in the last 24 hours in regards to the Budget?

PRIME MINISTER:

Too many to count Eddie, but they’re always good fun.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

Malcolm before we get to the Budget, what’s your take on what’s happening in the US at the moment with Donald Trump getting through as the Republican nominee? In some ways we look at it, we’ve been talking about it this morning on our show as almost a protest vote by the American public against traditional politicians. How do you read the situation?

PRIME MINISTER:

Well I think there is a lot of truth in that. I think there is a real sense of disappointment in middle America with the very slow growth in middle incomes. I mean Middle America has seen very slow growth and in fact in some cases has gone backwards in terms of their real income. So the income inequality is a big issue in the United States. We have much more equality in incomes in Australia because we’ve got a much better targeted social welfare system in Australia. But there are a lot of tensions there and I think the support for Trump is clearly evidence of that.

LUKE DARCY:

Is it more a protest through Prime Minister at, we understand his policies are disturbing to a lot of people and his thoughts on women and immigration and everything, I don’t think a lot of people can align with, but does it not ring true that our politicians and perhaps you included, to get to power have to have so many deals done behind the scenes that perhaps don’t represent the true thoughts. If we sat down and had a beer with you, Malcolm, might be the sort of person that you are that I think might appeal to a lot more people. Whereas Trump for all of his lunacy at times, the one thing you know is that he isn’t beholden to anyone. Is that not more the message?

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah that may be part of it. I think authenticity is always important. But having said that, the way it works in America, the politicians, in order to get the nomination of their party generally have to steer, for the Republicans have to steer to the right wing of their party and for the Democrats for the left of their party. But then when they get the nomination they’ve got to steer back to the centre because that’s where most people are. So making that switch is always very challenging and I think that’s the challenge that Donald Trump will have if he is the Republican nominee. But you know it’s a very dynamic, colorful electoral system they have in the United States and whoever the … it’s up to the American people. We observe it. We observe it with admiration sometimes, with consternation at others. But it is the biggest exercise in democracy we see in the developed world.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

Just finally on Trump, and we know that he’s the Republican nominee, not the President yet but –

PRIME MINISTER:

Well he’s not actually the Republican nominee quite yet Eddie, but it does look like he’s got it in the bag.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

He’s pretty much got it there, so let’s assume that he is for a second. How does his insular view on American foreign politics impact us in Australia? Because the ANZUS alliance has been such an important part of our foreign policy for so long.

PRIME MINISTER:

Look Eddie I have absolutely no doubt that the ANZUS alliance, the Australian-American relationship will continue to grow and strengthen regardless of who the President is. Our relationship with the United States is so deep; it is based on thousands if not millions of individual relationships. It’s been built up over generations.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

It makes it tough though when he calls –

PRIME MINISTER:

Presidents and Prime Ministers can adjust it a bit. But really it is a very deep and strong relationship and I have no doubt that regardless of who the American people choose, we will always have a very, very strong friend and ally in Washington.

EDDIE MCGRUIRE:

We’ll pivot here as they say in the classics. But it does make it a bit hard when he calls the Chinese ‘thieves’ and ‘cheats’ and things - which he did yesterday.

LUKE DARCY:

Can we get you back on to the Budget Malcolm which I’m sure you’re keen to discuss.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yes let’s get back to jobs and growth.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

The highlight for me, which I think you’ll be happy to talk about, was some opportunity for small business to gain some tax concessions. Can you explain that a little further?

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah exactly. Well what we’re proposing to do is to take the – at the moment – businesses with a turnover of $2 million or less, pay 28.5 per cent company tax as opposed to 30 per cent. We will from July 1 increase that to 27.5 per cent so increase the concession. So they’ll pay 27.5 versus 30, and it will cover businesses with turnover up to $10 million. Then the next year it’ll go up to $25 million. The next year up to 50 and then 100 and so forth.

What that is doing is providing real encouragement for those businesses those companies and their owners to invest and of course if they invest, they’ll employ. I mean Chris Bowen wrote a book about this a couple of years ago. It’s very clear; if you can reduce, if you can affordably reduce, which is what we’re doing, company tax, business taxes, you get more investment as a consequence and you get more employment. So this is everything we’re doing in this Budget, every single measure is focused on jobs and growth. And we are seeing strong jobs growth at the moment. We want to see that continuing. We think Australians want to continue a very successful transition from an economy that’s been pumped up by a mining construction boom which was terrific, but couldn’t go on forever. So we’ve got to have a more diverse economy and one that really puts every element of support we can behind business and especially small business, because that’s the most dynamic sector.

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

Malcolm I suppose the situation for you now going in, we understand you’re going to drive and see Sir Peter Cosgrove in the next couple of days. I’m not going to, you know, try to ask you specifically when it’s going to happen, you’ll go there at some stage and we’ll have an election. What is the, I mean, you’re such a big thinker. You’ve been such an inspiring person on the leadership stage for a long time even going back to the Republican movement. Leave aside the Budget for a second. What is it that you want to take Australia to? Where do you want Australia to be under your prime ministership?

You know we don’t need you to get up and give the first official speech here, but we really want to get a bit of the Malcolm Turnbull because as Darce said earlier, and when we were talking about Trump, we get the feeling that as all politicians, you can get a bit hamstrung sometimes with all the factions around you. We want the real Malcolm Turnbull to stand up. But what can you tell us, where are you going to lead us as far as this country is concerned?

PRIME MINISTER:

Eddie these are the most exciting times in human history. We have never seen economic change around the world that is so rapid both in the scale of it and the speed. And so what we have is an extraordinary opportunity to take advantage of that. We have the world at our feet and we are right here in the Asia-Pacific in the place where there’s the greatest economic growth. These enormous opportunities. So how do we ensure that we and our kids and our grandkids can take advantage of that?

Well, we do that by making sure that we open up those markets. That’s what we’ve been doing with the big free trade agreements. We do that by making sure that we’re investing our defence dollars in high tech businesses in Australia and we’re driving Australian jobs and particularly ones that are at the high tech end because that is where the big growth and opportunities are going to be.

We encourage people to invest into startup companies, innovative companies, and as you know we are doing that in fact that legislation’s just got through the Parliament. And of course we encourage and inspire businesses of every type. Particularly small businesses and so what we’re doing is we’re setting Australia up not for an election, not for next year, not even for the four years of the forward estimates, we’re setting Australia up for the next decade and the decades after that so that we can respond, we can be more competitive, more productive, take advantage of those opportunities, we’re backing Australian enterprise, we’re backing Australian entrepreneurship because that’s where the jobs come from. That’s where the opportunities will be seized and that’s where we’ll see the growth that we will want.

I mean I was with a group of kids from actually a Melbourne school, who were visiting the Parliament yesterday, and I was talking to them about what we were doing and I said to them, “You know, this place belongs to you, it does, everything here is being done with you in mind. What we’re seeking to do is ensure that when you grow up, you’ll have even greater opportunities, more exciting opportunities than your parents do and that you’ll be able to realise your dreams and you’ll be able to achieve all of the extraordinary things limited only by your imagination and by your ability to work and your enterprise.” So that’s the vision, the vision is a time of extraordinary opportunity, yes there’s plenty of challenges Eddie, and there’s no doubt about that but the way you deal with that is backing enterprise and that’s what we’re doing. This is a plan, a national economic plan for jobs and growth and you can see that every element in it is going to do exactly that. It will support stronger growth and more jobs.

MICK MOLLOY:

Well done on your first Budget too by the way Prime Minister, you’ll pass it on to Scott Morrison as well, it was a good Budget but you only got it half right. For future reference it’s ‘beers up, cigs up’. You’ve got the cigs up but you left alcohol at the same level and I think it was a rookie mistake, no doubt, but one I’m sure you’ll rectify in forthcoming Budgets. I’ll leave that with you.

PRIME MINISTER:

Thanks for the tip!

EDDIE MCGUIRE:

Well Prime Minister, we appreciate you joining us, we’re right on our 8 o’clock news and making time in our Canberra studio to come on the line and explain what the future of Australia holds under Malcolm Turnbull.

[Ends]

Transcript 40338