Tuesday, 14 June 2016 21:31

Time to embrace an ‘economic reformist zeal’, CEDA tells political leaders Featured


CEDA, the Committee for Economic Development of Australia, has called for both major political parties during the election campaign to outline their policies and plans for delivering economic growth.

With less than three weeks to polling day, CEDA chief executive Professor Stephen Martin says it is vital that both major parties deliver sustainable, holistic plans for how they will drive growth in Australia over the next three years.

“Australia has undergone significant economic reform in the past which has served us well and ensured our current level of prosperity.

“However, it is time again to embrace an economic reformist zeal to ensure the next wave of prosperity.”

Professor Martin was commenting on a report released on Tuesday in which CEDA provides policy priorities across 10 key areas to ensure continued economic growth, an issue which the committee says is of critical importance, particularly in the current federal election campaign.

“CEDA has identified 10 key areas where action needs to be taken, which are innovation, competition policy, education, workforce participation, infrastructure, fiscal resilience, tax reform, federalism, workplace relations and climate change.

“Key policy actions under each of these categories are identified that range from long-term planning for infrastructure development and removing unnecessary regulation to initiatives to reduce the cost of childcare and the high marginal tax rate families experience when the second income earner seeks to re-enter the labour market following parental leave.”

At a time when both the political parties, industry and business and the technology start-up sector are pushing the "innovation" mantra as a key part of Australia’s so-called "innovation economy", encouraging innovation, improving overall education outcomes and introducing competition reform to previously protected areas are key areas explored by CEDA in its newly released report.

Professor Martin says that to maintain Australia’s economic prosperity and “ensure we continue to create high-paying jobs of the future, Australia needs a genuine growth agenda to improve our competitiveness, increase economic flexibility and drive investment in economic infrastructure and our people”.

“Australia is well positioned economically, but with the right reform it can do better and increase the likelihood of continuing success in a highly competitive global economy.

“This CEDA report delivers an important roadmap of priority areas to ensure our future prosperity.”

The report is part two of CEDA’s 2016 series on economic repair, and follows the release in March of its "Deficit to balance: budget repair options" which examined options for repairing the federal budget and returning to surplus by 2018-19.

“This latest research examines how to repair Australia’s economic structures and drive a growth agenda,” Professor Martin says.

At the Melbourne launch of CEDA’s report yesterday, speakers included CEDA national chairman, Paul McClintock, Productivity Commission chairman, Peter Harris, IFM Investors chief executive, Brett Himbury and Infrastructure Victoria chief executive Michel Masson.

To download CEDA’s report click here.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - an iTWire treasure is a mentor and coach who volunteers also a writer and much valued founding partner of iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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