Shadow Treasurer Curtis Pitt said Queenslanders should be very wary of the Premier’s spin efforts on the economy.
“Since the Stafford by-election, the Premier’s tried to spin his way out of trouble by arrogantly telling Queenslanders he’s personally turned the economy around,” Mr Pitt said.
“This simply isn’t borne out by the facts. It’s more Campbell Newman spin, the same stuff that was utterly rejected by the people of Redcliffe and Stafford.
“That’s because it’s not just his arrogance that’s put people off, but the reality is that the Premier hasn’t fulfilled his promises to lower the unemployment rate and ‘supercharge’ the economy.
“The facts are simple. Compared to the economy he inherited in March 2012, economic growth is slower and unemployment is higher under Campbell Newman.
“That’s without the immediate ravages of a GFC and a multitude of devastating natural disasters.
“Business investment has plummeted, as has private investment. State final demand, the key measure of growth in the domestic economy that doesn’t include exports, has contracted for two quarters in a row.
“It’s only our export sectors keeping our heads above water. Without coal and LNG exports, the Queensland economy could well be in recession.
“Unfortunately it’s the same sorry tale when it comes to unemployment, despite the Premier promising to lower the unemployment rate to 4%. His own budget papers say unemployment in 2017-18, the year we’re supposed to hit 4%, will be 5.25%.
“Unemployment in June was 6.3% seasonally adjusted, higher than the 5.5% he inherited in March 2012.
“The participation rate is also lower, meaning less people are looking for work. If the participation rate was the same in June 2014 that it was in March 2012, the unemployment rate would be 7%.
“There are actually 1,100 fewer full-time jobs in Queensland on a seasonally adjusted basis than when the Newman Government was elected.
“Overall growth in jobs under Campbell Newman are part-time. While part-time jobs are welcome, the Premier must explain why full-time jobs have declined.
“Campbell Newman continues to arrogantly treat Queenslanders like mugs. When will he stop the spin and axe the arrogance, and treat Queenslanders with the respect they deserve?”
Background facts on economic growth and unemployment*
In 2011-12 under Labor Queensland had:
- An economy growing at 4%
- Business investment of 42.3%
- Yearly average unemployment of 5.5%. Unemployment was 5.5% in March 2012.
- Private investment of 28.6%
- And domestic spending in the economy or state final demand of 9.5%
Now (over 2014-15) under Newman LNP Government Queensland has:
- An economy growing slower at 3% despite lower interest rates and improved global conditions
- Business investment is falling by 20% after falling by 2½% in 2013-14
- Yearly average unemployment of 6% and not forecast to recover to levels left by Labor for another 2 years.
- Unemployment is now at 6.3% up from 5.5% at the election. There are 1,100 fewer full-time jobs in Queensland on a seasonally adjusted basis than when the Newman Government was elected. The participation rate also remains lower than when the Government was elected at 66.3% down from 66.9% in March 2012. Based on the participation rate there are 20,490 Queenslanders who have given up looking for work since the election and are no longer counted in the unemployment statistics.
- Private investment falling by 11¼% following a fall of ½% in 2013-14.
- And domestic spending in the economy or state final demand falling by 1¼% in 2014-15.
This means that without new LNG exports and an improvement in coal volumes the Queensland economy could be verging on recession. Already State final demand has contracted by 0.4% in December Quarter and 0.8% in March Quarter 2014.
*Every figure here except for the unemployment rate estimate under the March 2012 participation rate comes from State Government Budget papers or ABS data