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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 41091

Doorstop with Nola Marino MP, Member for Forrest

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: 02/08/2017

Release Type: Transcript

Transcript ID: 41091

Subject(s): GST; Western Australia; Same Sex Marriage; The Economy; Andrew Denton

Location: Busselton, WA

NOLA MARINO MP – MEMBER FOR FORREST:

I’d just really like to welcome Malcolm Turnbull here to a fabulous part of the South West today. Here in Busselton we’ve met some wonderful community volunteers. Those involved in the community as volunteers especially the emergency services. It is wonderful to have you here Malcolm. Welcome to what we think is the most fabulous part of world.

PRIME MINISTER:

Well it certainly has the most passionate advocate in its Federal Member.

NOLA MARINO MP:

Absolutely!

PRIME MINISTER:

Nola it is great to be here and it’s been a very warm reception. We’ve met so many of your constituents, as you said emergency service workers, volunteers, school kids, their teachers, their parents, the local government. So it has been a great visit.

But I am here today to announce that we will be committing $1.5 million in federal funds into the Busselton Jetty Project.

[Applause]

And we’re delighted to do that. It is part of the Building Better Regions Fund announcements that will be made later in week but I wanted to take the opportunity in announcing this today.

This is all part of a really substantial renovation, I suppose, development of this precinct. It has got enormous opportunity in terms of activating tourism potential and of course it is a big part of building the commercial and tourist opportunities in this region.

Another part of that of course is the airport.

NOLA MARINO MP:

Absolutely.

PRIME MINISTER:

We talked about that when we were there and there is real concern that the $45 million, was it –

NOLA MARINO MP:

There is $56 million and $10 million from us.

PRIME MINISTER:

$56 million in total that was committed from the Barnett government is not going to be honoured by the McGowan Government so I’ll take that up with Premier McGowan this afternoon when I see him and of course there is $10 million committed to the project from the Federal Government.

That’s a very important part of the infrastructure here and like the jetty, it shows the passion and the commitment of the local community, the Federal Member, the council, all the business leaders – you can see how passionate they are about the South West and how they are determined to make sure that it has the infrastructure it needs and of course, so are we.

So I’m delighted to be here.

NOLA MARINO MP:

And it has got a great future. This region is a major economic driver for the whole South West and the state.

PRIME MINISTER:

It certainly is.

JOURNALIST:

Prime Minister do you think that Mr McGowan might be more inclined to honour the pledge from the Barnett government if you were to fix the GST?

PRIME MINISTER:

He should honour the pledges that have been made but it is a very important investment. I’ll take it up with him when I see him.

JOURNALIST:

Can I ask you on a federal issue too – there is an impression this afternoon that you’ve dodged the question about a postal plebiscite.

PRIME MINISTER:

I’ve been asked a few questions about that and I’ve dealt with the issue.

JOURNALIST:

Are you for it?

PRIME MINISTER:

We have a policy. I am for the policy we took to the election. Right? That’s our policy. It has not changed. That’s my commitment. I’ve dealt with that repeatedly at the previous press conference today so I’d love to hear some questions from the local media in particular.

JOURNALIST:

Mr Turnbull, if Premier McGowan does cut funding from the airport expansion will the Federal Government stand up and make up that funding?

PRIME MINISTER:

What the important thing for him to do is to honour the commitment that was made by the state government.

Look, this sort of thing should not be a political issue. I mean really it is obvious that an area like this, the South West, needs an improvement in its transport infrastructure. We were there with Mr Walsh who has got a big-

NOLA MARINO MP:

Yes, exports.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah, exports, beef exports into China.

A better airport will enable the South West to bring in more tourists, send more produce out – it’s going to be vital for jobs in this region. You look at some of the reports from the HILDA Survey that have been in the news today about low income growth, low wages growth and that is real challenge for many, most Australian families, but what is the answer to that? The answer to that is more economic growth, it is more investment and more jobs.

Every policy that my government has is focused on encouraging more investment and more employment.

You know, whether we are investing in economic infrastructure like this, whether we’re investing on economic infrastructure on a huge scale, over $7 billion across the state - $10 million into the Busselton Airport – whether we are reducing company tax and business taxes so that businesses have got the incentive to invest, everything we’re doing is encouraging investment and employment.

The Labor Party on the other hand has declared war on business. It doesn’t want investment and if you don’t have, if you’re not backing business, if you’re not backing investment you won’t get any jobs I can tell you.

JOURNALIST:

You talk about jobs but your PaTH program here has just created 25 jobs in the South West since its launch. Is this disappointing?

PRIME MINISTER:

It is early days. It is early days. It is actually a very exciting project, policy. It is innovative. It is a new program and I think it is important to get behind it and support it.

Now we saw yesterday the Australian Hotels Association announce that they are going to take up 10,000 interns over the next four years. So that is 10,000 young Australians who are on welfare who will get an opportunity, will get the opportunity to work, they’ll get the experience of work and many of them, I hope all of them transition into full time employment.

The program is showing real success and it should be encouraged. I mean, what could be more important than getting young people who are on welfare and are at risk of being there for a very long time into employment?

JOURNALIST:

Labor’s campaigning pretty hard on inequality. Labor said this week it was a key voter concern. What is your government doing to address that?

PRIME MINISTER:

Economic growth is the answer. If you are concerned as we all are about low wages growth, about ensuring that Australians have the opportunity to realise their dreams as I was saying to the kids today, to achieve they want to achieve, you need a strong economy. You get a strong economy by ensuring that you are backing business  and supporting investment. That’s where the jobs are going to come from.

Now what does the Labor Party want to do? They want to put up company tax. They want to put up personal income tax. They have got no plan to encourage investment or employment. Not one policy.

Look, you don’t have to take my word for it. Take Bill Shorten’s. He was on the radio on your radio station with Fran Kelly, the ABC and Fran said to him: ‘What have you got Mr Shorten to encourage investment and employment?’ And he thought for a while and he said: ‘Well we support more public transport’. Well that is terrific. We all support more public transport. We are putting a lot of money into that too.

But you know something, you’ve got to back business. You’ve got to encourage small and medium businesses above all and we have succeeded already in reducing tax on small and medium companies up to $50 million turnover and that encourages them to invest more and employ more.

Now it is pretty simple. If you’re not going to encourage investment, you won’t get employment. Labor’s upping taxes, upping both personal and company and what that will do is discourage investment. It’s got to. I mean, it follows as night follows day.

JOURNALIST:

PM, Mark McGowan has said given you’ve come empty handed of the GST you should’ve stayed home, sent the money you’ve spent on airfares to the state government and the state would be better off. He’s also raised concern about the Census fail and has said that that has compromised the data set. Could you respond to both of those comments?

PRIME MINISTER:

As far as the ABS matter, I think I addressed that when you asked me that question earlier today and the my Treasurer Scott Morrison and Ben Wyatt have talked about that. There are some legal issues associated with it.

As far as generally with Mark McGowan, I mean, you know what, I mean if he’s making these sort of belligerent remarks to the media, you know what will happen, I’ll see him this afternoon and he’ll be very charming and he’ll say: ‘Oh look I had to say all those things for the media’.

But I’ll tell you something, in the real world which we should all operate in, you don’t have to say things you don’t want to.

Now, I get on well with Mark McGowan. I have shown him every courtesy and I think the people of Western Australia would expect him to be courteous and persuasive and not issue bellicose, belligerent remarks in advance of a meeting that he’s requested.

You know, would anyone do that if your object was the persuade someone to be more cooperative or collaborative? Would you do that? No. It’s a bit pointless really.

But I’m sure that he’ll be very charming when I see him and I will be too.

I’m keen to work cooperatively with him and I can tell you I know enough about West Australia and Western Australians that they want governments, politicians to work together not have a go at each other through the media.

JOURNALIST:

Just in relation to the White House and the upheaval in the office – are you worried that there is going to be fallout for Australia just in relation to trade, climate, global security? We’ve seen a lot of reporting-

PRIME MINISTER:

Look, obviously I’m not going to run a commentary on politics in other countries. I don’t run a commentary on politics in my own country – I leave that to you – but I’m certainly not going to run one on American politics.

But the relationship between our two governments is as close and tight as any relationship could be.

The American Alliance is the foundation of our national security system and you know, whether it is my relations with the president or the vice-president or the secretary of state and Julie’s relationship with him and Marise’s relationship with Jim Mattis, it is a very tight relationship. And it is enduring - it has been very close for a very long time and it will be very close for a long time yet believe me. 

JOURNALIST:

Prime Minister, Andrew Denton has been diagnosed with advanced heart disease and he’s had to pull out of his euthanasia campaigning. Any words for him?

PRIME MINISTER:

Lots of love Andrew. A swift recovery. Take care of yourself. You are invincible, don’t forget that. You’ll be right. Take care. Lots of love to you and Jen. See ya.

JOURNALIST:

Prime Minister, will you take another local question?

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah, I’d love to.

JOURNALIST:

I’m from Bunbury, and we have thing called a methamphetamine problem.

PRIME MINISTER:

Yes.

JOURNALIST:

[Inaudible]

PRIME MINISTER:

Yeah.

JOURNALIST:

Will Bunbury be the trial site for your testing, drug testing of welfare recipients?

PRIME MINISTER:

Look, I can’t confirm. The locations for those trial sites will be announced in due course.

JOURNALIST:

But is Bunbury-

PRIME MINISTER:

We’ll just wait until they’re announced, okay. I can see your interest and I applaud it by the way.

Can I tell you, we are waging a ferocious war against ‘ice’ at every level, both in terms of criminal justice system and catching the criminals and intercepting the meth that they’re trafficking but also providing record amounts of support to rehabilitation and education. But it is a huge health challenge, a huge social challenge and it obviously needs a response that is multi-dimensional.

You know, as Ken Lay says: ‘You can’t arrest your way to success here’. That’s an important part of it, law enforcement is a key part of it but obviously there is the social aspects and health aspects as well.

I can assure you it is a big issue. Nola and I talk about it a lot.

NOLA MARINO MP:

It is, very much so.

PRIME MINISTER:

It is something that is challenging for all of us.

Okay, thank you.

[ENDS]

Transcript 41091