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Australia adds to stimulus as record deficits loom

Video Credit: Reuters Studio - Duration: 01:36s - Published
Australia adds to stimulus as record deficits loom

Australia adds to stimulus as record deficits loom

Australia's government will run record budget deficits this year and next as it spends big on stimulus and infrastructure to cushion the economy from the coronavirus, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday, warning of tough times ahead.

Libby Hogan reports.

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Australia's leader says its government will run record deficits this year and next.

The country is spending big on stimulus and infrastructure to cushion the economy from the coronavirus.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison warned of tough times ahead on Monday (June 15).

"The hit to our economy, we must understand is significant, despite our relatively stronger performance.

And the road ahead will be very hard.

There is a mountain yet to climb." Morrison announced another $1.5 billion Australian dollars on infrastructure and fast-track approval for a range of projects.

Although he did add that Australia was coming through the virus better than most of its peers, as states across the country launched a further easing of lockdown restrictions.

The government is fast-tracking approvals for 15 projects, including the expansion of BHP Group's Olympic Dam, which has an undersea electricity connection and is expected to generate around 66,000 jobs.

This is a far cry from the usual turaround period for approvals -- which typically takes 42 months.

Morrison will say that he intends to reduce this period by half.

"Today I announce a priority list of 15 major projects that are on the fast-track for approval under a bilateral model between the Commonwealth, states and territories." While massive stimulus packages had been necessary, Morrison warned they would be temporary and spending would have to be strictly controlled over time.




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