Having spent $200 billion to stabilise the economy during the COVID-19 crisis, new research shows it is now time for the Federal Government to roll out structural supports—projects that are labour intensive, rely heavily on local supply chains and deliver lasting benefits.
The Australia Institute has released a new report, detailing key economic criteria to help assess the effectiveness of the future stimulus measures and structural support needed to recover from the COVID-19 economic crisis.
“Despite the wage subsidy, cash grants and loans to business, the number of unemployed people in Australia is expected to rise sharply—a wide range of government programs will be needed to create jobs for all of those people,” said Matt Grudnoff, Senior Economist at The Australia Institute.
“Some big infrastructure projects will be too slow and rely on too much heavy equipment to create many jobs, while some job creation programs keep people busy but deliver no lasting benefits to the community. Spending lots of money is a lot easier than creating a lot of jobs, and a stringent criteria to evaluate spending measures would ensure that taxpayers get value in both the short term and in the long term.
“Our research shows that the best way to create jobs now, and a better economy for the country in the future, is for governments to focus on projects that are labour intensive, rely heavily on local supply chains, and that deliver long lasting benefits.
“If the jobs that governments create in the coming year deliver lasting benefits, as we have outlined, Australia won’t be ‘saddled with debt’ it will be blessed with new assets, and the public can be certain that taxpayer money is being well spent with long-term benefits.”