Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Hockey has done it, so he says - savings found

Joe Hockey on savings Tues March 13

Remember that $70 billion black hole, or however much it was (accounts differ).

The Coalition had a lot of savings to find to pay for its promises, and it has been working away for weeks.

You can’t remember big Coalition promises? Think about repealing the mining tax, repealing the carbon tax. It needs to find big savings.

Today in the midst of a press conference about something else The Coalition’s Treasury spokesman Joe Hockey let slip that he had done it.

Asked by our economics correspondent Peter Martin whether he had found all the savings he had been looking for Mr Hockey replied: “Yes, we have found the savings we were looking for.”

But he won’t let us in on the cuts.

That’s have to have to wait until the election, but hopefully not until two days before the vote as happened last time.

Who will make sure the numbers add up? Last time it was a pair of Perth accountants who were later disciplined by the Institute of Chartered Accountants for the way they went about the task. Separately the Treasury found reams of mistakes including double-counting, banking income from the sale of an asset without deducting lost dividends and so on.

Mr Hockey also revealed he had sold that problem. The Coalition has picked an organisation to run an eye over the numbers (please don’t mention the word “audit” - that was what the Perth accountants into trouble).

In his words: "You’ll be surprised and you will be happy about it. They will be very credible."

In The Pulse, just now

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