Budget Update Confirms Strong Surpluses And Falling Debt

Victoria’s economic position continues to strengthen, with the 2015-16 Budget Update showing the budget surplus has increased to $1.7 billion, up from the previous estimate of $1.2 billion, the Treasurer Tim Pallas said today.

Across the budget and forward estimates, surpluses are set to total $6.7 billion.

The sound and prudent management by the Andrews Labor Government is positioning Victoria’s budget as one of the strongest in the nation.

Victoria’s budget forecasts a sustained boost in demand, robust employment growth, inflationary pressures controlled, moderate wages growth, and sustained population growth, which continues to be the highest in the nation.

The Budget Update comes on the back of ABS State Accounts released last week, which showed that Victoria’s real GSP growth of 2.5 per cent is now the highest of the non-mining states, behind only Western Australia, and above Australian real GDP growth of 2.3 per cent.

Victoria’s unemployment rate – which was as high as 6.8 per cent in 2014 under the Liberal Government – has now been reduced to 5.6 per cent, with more than 73,000 new jobs created since the Labor Government was elected.

Consistent with the Labor Government’s commitment to maintaining the State’s triple-A credit rating, net debt as a percentage of GSP is projected to fall to 4.4 per cent in 2018-19.

Growth in the Victorian economy is expected to remain at 2.5 per cent in 2015-16, consistent with the forecast in the 2015-16 Budget.

Quotes attributable to Treasurer Tim Pallas

“We promised Victorians that we would deliver strong surpluses, create more jobs, and keep our triple-A credit rating secure – and we are delivering on that promise.”

“We’ve increased funding for schools, hospitals and transport, but we’re also making sure we keep our finances stable.”

“The previous Liberal government blew out debt, and had nothing to show for it.”

“We’re maintaining strong surpluses and we’re getting Victoria moving again.”