SENATOR THE HON PENNY WONG
LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS
SENATOR FOR SOUTH AUSTRALIA
SENATOR CLAIRE MOORE
SHADOW MINISTER FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND THE PACIFIC
SENATOR FOR QUEENSLAND
AID FUNDING PLUNGES TO NEW LOW AS BISHOP ROLLED AGAIN
Australia's record low level of overseas development assistance has plunged even further as the Turnbull Government makes more devastating cuts to our aid budget.
Having already seen over $11 billion slashed from the aid program under her watch, Minister Bishop has again failed dismally.
Australia has a deep interest in contributing to global poverty alleviation, and our international development program supports security and stability in our region.
Yet, since coming to power, the Abbott and Turnbull Governments have relentlessly hacked at our aid funding, abandoning Australia's bipartisan commitment to GNI growth and overseeing a 24.2 per cent cut to the development budget since 2013.
At the same time as it committed to a $50 billion tax cut to big business, the 2016-17 Budget delivered the weakest levels of Australian development assistance in history, spending just 23 cents in every $100 of our national income on foreign aid.
Now, unbelievably, at the same time as Malcolm Turnbull delivers a tax cut for millionaires and a tax hike for every working Australian, he's done it again with the 2017 Budget cutting a further $300 million over the forward estimates.
The Turnbull Government's cuts to development assistance are already a source of international embarrassment for Australia, and are at odds with the generous spirit of the Australian people.
These latest cuts will only worsen our already embarrassingly low level of international development assistance and harm our efforts to alleviate poverty, and make our region safer and more secure.
It's a Budget that fails the fairness test. Australians just can't trust Malcolm Turnbull to deliver a fair budget - he doesn't believe it, his party doesn't believe it.
WEDNESDAY, 10 MAY 2017