The incoming Government must implement urgent reforms to restore confidence – EY report says

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Monday 19 August 2013 — EY has today released a report calling for the incoming Government to action major government and economic reforms to ensure the Australian economy remains sustainable for the long-term.

Ensuring Australia’s economic sustainability – Government Agenda 2014, highlights the critical issues that need to be on the incoming Government’s agenda with key recommendations in the areas of COAG, carbon, defence, economic management, education, health, human services, infrastructure, productivity and tax.

EY CEO Rob McLeod, says Australians need an incoming Government with the courage and vision to introduce reforms that address the uncertainty that is currently hindering Australia’s competiveness and growth prospects.

“At a time when we are faced with the cost pressures of an ageing population and a loss of GDP growth as the mining boom declines, it is going to be critical for the incoming Government to implement the policies that create a sustainable economy and restore the confidence of businesses, consumers and global investors,” Rob said.

To begin restoring confidence, the report urges the incoming Government to:

  • Set out a clear and credible fiscal policy that charts a path back to surplus
  • Refine and reorient Australia’s tax system to support growth and participation
  • Develop a comprehensive economic strategy and the infrastructure to support it
  • Increase productivity
  • Implement a carbon policy that creates certainty and achieves emission targets.
  • Reform Defence to maximise its services under fiscal constraints
  • Change the funding model for human services delivery
  • Develop the right skills to support our future economy, and
  • Strengthen Australia’s balance sheet.

“Of critical importance to restoring confidence is addressing our tax system, which is in need of reform from top to bottom if Australia’s is to remain economically viable. The current system is complex and impedes investment and economic growth. It is simply uncompetitive.”

“Our political leaders need to be long-term in their focus and articulate a clear strategy that prioritises our economic future.” says Rob. “While investment needs to be maintained in the important spending portfolios such as health and education, it needs to done in a way that ensures we live within our means and maintain the appropriate balance between surpluses and deficits as we move through changing business and economic cycles,” Rob said.

“History will remember the September election as a pivotal moment for Australia – it will offer a choice between our national decline into recession on one hand or a catalyst for reforms that establish a sustainable economy for the long-term,” he said.

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Contact details:

Kate Davies
Ernst & Young Australia
Tel: +61 2 9248 5428 or + 61 421 615 202