By Hon. Larry Anthony, Director
The SAS Group's Director, Hon. Larry Anthony, reveals the latest state of play in Australia's State and Federal Governments and discusses what impact those issues will have on the business environment.
"Welcome to the ‘Inside Word’ from the SAS Group.
It’s been a year now since the Coalition Abbott Government has been elected and hasn’t time just flown! Whilst they’ve had some success on the domestic agenda – particularly stopping the boats, repealing the carbon tax, and getting rid of the mining tax – there are still enormous challenges implementing the rest of the government’s economic agenda.
It is in the area of foreign policy that there has been a real surprise for the Coalition Government.
Tony Abbott has been outstanding in his advocacy on many different foreign policy issues, and in more recent times on National Security. National Security has produced a unity ticket with Bill Shorten and the Labor Party, but it also produces enormous risk as we prepare our response (or the government does) to assist the United States and the Alliance with combating ISIS. Whilst everybody is on board now, things can go terribly wrong if there is mission creep or, of course, if we have casualties in the Middle East, or an incident domestically.
The other unusual area where there is a unity ticket with the ALP is Indigenous Affairs. At the moment the Prime Minister is up in Arnhem Land and is trying to work through how to recognize the first Australians into the Constitution, but that’s where the bipartisan unity ticket falls away.
Back on the domestic agenda when Parliament resumes next week (September 22nd) it’ll be the issues of Higher Education and Medicare, particularly the co-payment. Other areas of debate will include the stringent policies the government is trying to implement on unemployment benefits, vocational education and training, and on the environment e.g. the renewable energy targets (RETS) and the Great Barrier Reef.
Of course the usual suspects will be there in the Senate, like the Palmer United Party and other cross-benchers, taking their place in the media sun, making it more difficult for the government to govern as it tries to pass the more contentious issues of their May budget measures.
That’s all from the ‘Inside Word.’"