Speeches

28 Nov 2016

Speech - Private Members Business (Regional Infrastructure)

Our nation will rue the day we did not use this period of ultra low interest rates to invest in critical economic infrastructure in the regions and in our cities. We have missed an opportunity to put our people to work, and this is theft from future generations. Failure to invest in infrastructure is theft from future generations.

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24 Nov 2016

Speech - Matter of Public Importance (Economic Inequality)

I congratulate the member for Fenner on a brilliant speech. There are stark differences between this side of the House and that side of the House. We live in a community. They think we live in a corporation. We on this side of the House honour the hard work that creates wealth. They just honour the wealth itself. Those on that side of the House are so out of touch with average Australians. They do not walk in the same shopping aisles as average Australians—and this applies particularly to the Prime Minister. If they did, they would not attack all the building blocks of strong economic growth and a fairer society like they have since 2014. 

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22 Nov 2016

Speech - Address In Reply

In speaking on the address-in-reply, I want to address the government's industrial relations agenda in particular, which it is still trying to get through the parliament. At the core of this agenda are two bills: the registered organisations bill and the ABCC bill. The government says it is all about cleaning up corruption in Australia. They say it is all about making building and construction more efficient. But I say it is about the Liberals' signature policy; I say it is really about Work Choices.

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22 Nov 2016

Speech - Private Members Buisness (Inequality & CEO Pay)

I thank the member for Scullin for moving this important motion, because inequality of wealth and income is the central challenge of our generation. There is no doubt it is casting a very dark shadow over the global economy and over national economies and societies. We see now that capitalist countries are increasingly dominated by a plutocratic family model of inherited privilege which is usually backed up by an overpowered and overpaid financial and corporate elite, which is why it was not surprising last week to see our Prime Minister out there doing a Napoleon.

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22 Nov 2016

Speech - Constituency Statement (Anti-Dumping)

In the past decade, the issue of dumping in steel and aluminium markets, particularly by Chinese manufacturers, has had a profound effect on the Australian steel and aluminium industries, with thousands of workers losing their jobs. Dumping is a practice of exporting goods such as steel and aluminium at below market cost, often with the intention of weakening competitors.

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11 Nov 2016

Speech - Constituency Statement (BHP Tax Evasion)

Over the past decade, the behaviour of BHP and other multinational companies has shattered public faith in our political system. We have heard about trickle-down economics, but it has an older and uglier brother. This is the straight rip-off, where companies refuse to play by the rules, and their cronies simply look the other way. It is clear that, over a decade, there has been a culture of tax avoidance at BHP, and they have sought to evade tax on $5.7 billion held in their Singapore tax shield. Not only have they flouted federal tax law; they have also behaved disgracefully in seeking to avoid state royalty payments through transfer pricing.

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08 Nov 2016

Speech - Private Members Business (Pension Deeming Rates)

I would like to say a few words about this important motion. I would like to compliment the contributions from the members for Lindsay and Macquarie, who clearly understand the importance of cost of living pressures, not only on full pensioners, but on part pensioners and of course on self-funded retirees. It does not matter where you look over the period of the Abbott-Turnbull government, there has been one common theme: a concerted attack on the living standards of pensioners and self-funded retirees, and a failure to recognise the importance of dignity in retirement for people who have worked hard all of their lives to make our country great.

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19 Oct 2016

Speech - Constituency Statement (BHP Tax Evasion)

Last week I spoke about BHP's tax evasion and the use of a Singaporean tax shield. On 17 October, Matthew Stevens in the Australian Financial Review made the comment that because BHP was a large Australian taxpayer it was entitled to evade tax on some of its earnings. Mr Stevens apparently thinks it is okay for BHP to seek to avoid paying tax on all the profits of $5.7 billion held in their Singaporean tax shield. In my view, it was their duty to pay this tax, as it is of any taxpayer, corporate or individual.

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12 Oct 2016

Speech - International Tax Agreements Amendment Bill

This is a very important bill. It includes treaty provisions which form part of the OECD BEPS process—that is the base erosion and profit-shifting project. No project could be more important to Australia's future prosperity than one that deals with eliminating multinational tax evasion. It was work I and G20 finance ministers started in 2013, and it shows the importance of international cooperation and how essential that is if we are to deal with the scourge of multinational tax evasion.

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12 Oct 2016

Speech - Constituency Statement (NBN)

I just wanted to say a few words about internet speeds and internet connection in the electorate of Lilley and the northern suburbs of Brisbane. Earlier this year I was contacted by residents of a new estate, Brighton Landing, regarding the lack of broadband internet in the area. This was a new estate and it did not even have access to ADSL. 

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