Queensland Parliamentary Leader of the Palmer United Party, Dr Alex Douglas MP says the Queensland mid-year economic review generates a false perception that the State Government must sell assets.
Dr Douglas said the public had been very clear about not wanting asset sales but the Treasurer Tim Nicholls was trying to persuade the public that this was the only avenue to get the state out of debt by constantly referring to gross debt of $77 billion.
“It is deceitful to claim that there is no other path to recovery than to sell major public assets. When the government only talks about gross debt, not net debt it is falsely conveying the true economic situation,” he said..
The Review has identified a revised net debt total of $9.213 billion for 2013/14, down from a budgeted $10.821 billion.
“The Treasurer says that debt is up, income is down, expenses are down, general taxation is up and the actual deficit is $7.66 billion, and he wants to ‘continue the conversation with Queenslanders about the best way forward’.
“I say to him: Resign, call an election and let the public choose an alternative government because the public do not want asset sales.
“Income is static because 45 percent is dependent on Federal cash and the state tax take being flat but it will improve.
“What now is happening is that the Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey is turning those Federal taps off and furthermore the State Government will not adapt to the market. It is trying to beat the market.
“The short-term penalty is that all Queenslanders are suffering as a result. The worst offender is the offensive construction of the Premier’s future palace, 1 William St.
“The Auditor General has given that a $1.6 billion cost for the first 15 years alone to the state and we still will not own it.
“The best way to repay debt is not sell the family silver but build-up the capital to be able to buy more that can generate a return on its investment
“For those who are patient the compounding effect of investment returns beats all, impulsive one-off sell-off solutions.”