MEDIA RELEASE: Liberals' Budget: Cuts Aid, Consular Help - Passport Fees Up, Wednesday, 4 May 2016

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THE HON TANYA PLIBERSEK MP
DEPUTY LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS
AND INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MEMBER FOR SYDNEY

THE HON MATT THISTLETHWAITE
SHADOW PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS
SHADOW PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY FOR IMMIGRATION
MEMBER FOR KINGSFORD SMITH

LIBERALS' BUDGET: CUTS AID, CONSULAR HELP - PASSPORT FEES UP

 

  

The Liberals' Budget looks after high income earners and big business, while cutting aid to the world's poor.

Since coming to Government in 2013, the Liberals have gutted Australia's aid program. This Budget locks in their cuts. Australia's aid program is now the weakest in history

 

The Liberals have trashed Australia's reputation as a good global citizen.

Labor has already announced measures designed to start to rebuild the ailing aid program.

If elected, Labor will:

  • provide $450 million to support the important work of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, placing Australia in the top five global contributors;

  • commit an extra $40 million a year to help some of the world’s poorest people, including support for Australian NGOs working in developing countries to deliver critical projects like maternal and child health, schooling, clean water, and sanitation;

  • legislate to restore accountability to Australia’s aid program by reintroducing the annual ministerial Budget statement on overseas aid, after it was axed by the Liberals in 2014. Labor will release the statement at the same time as each federal Budget to show how aid is allocated by sector, country, and region; and

  • legislate for an independent evaluation of the Australia’s aid program, as well as the measurement and reporting of effectiveness.

 

Labor’s proposals have been costed by the independent Parliamentary Budget Office, and are fully offset.  

The Liberals’ Budget also cuts consular support, which could see Australian dual nationals left stranded overseas without help.  Dual nationals will no longer be entitled to Australian consular assistance in countries of which they are citizens.  Labor is very concerned by this move. 

In addition, the Liberals’ Budget increases fees for ordinary passports which means travel, for work or pleasure, will cost Australians more. 

 

WEDNESDAY, 4 MAY 2016