Australians are receiving news that the country is set to experience the worst budget deficit since World War II, a fact that most likely does not come as a shock to many given the current circumstance.
The pandemic has wreaked economic havoc across the globe, and unfortunately Australia has not been spared. News came recently that JobSeeker, JobKeeper and Coronavirus Supplement payments would extend further into 2021 at a lesser rate, therefore certifying economic stability for many. The Finance Minister announced today that the Government has thus far provided economic support for workers, households and businesses of approximately $289 billion.
“The Economic and Fiscal Update shows the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our nation’s finances as well as the scale of the support that has been provided to prepare our health system and cushion the blow for millions of households and businesses. Despite the support to the economy from the measures the Government has taken, real GDP is forecast to have fallen sharply in the June quarter by 7 per cent. However, the easing of health restrictions in line with the health advice is expected to deliver an increase in economic activity from the September quarter and beyond,” said Senator Mathias Cormann, Minister for Finance.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the extension of support recognised Australia’s economic recovery was still in its early stages and a number of businesses and individuals remained significantly affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic.
“The government’s focus remains on reopening the economy where it is safe to do so, but the extension of these measures recognises that some parts of the economy will continue to be affected and need continued support,” the Treasurer said. “Sadly, as a result of this global health pandemic, businesses will close and people will lose their jobs, but that is why we have extended the Coronavirus Supplement and announced a new skills package to help people transition from welfare to work. It is also why we are extending the JobKeeper Payment beyond September to help keep businesses in business and Australians in jobs as our economy reopens.”
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