A responsible budget

Despite lower than expected revenue, this Budget sets out a responsible path to surplus on a timetable that supports jobs and growth. This Budget makes room for priority investments and fully offsets these investments over the next decade.

Changing economic and fiscal circumstances

Responding to changing economic and fiscal circumstances is a central element of the Government's fiscal approach.

Since the 2012‑13 Budget, tax receipts have been revised down by around $17 billion in 2012‑13. This brings the total write‑downs in tax receipts over the five years since the 2008‑09 Budget to around $170 billion. Since the 2012‑13 MYEFO, tax receipts have been revised down by around $60 billion over the four years to 2015‑16.

The Government has chosen not to offset the hit to revenue in the near term, as it would come at significant cost to jobs and growth.

Strong public finances

This Budget sets a pathway to return to balance in 2015‑16 and to surplus by 2016‑17, improves the sustainability of Australia's public finances and builds on Australia's record of fiscal and economic strength.

This fiscal consolidation is being achieved through a combination of responsible savings and by allowing the natural increase in tax receipts associated with a growing economy to flow through to the budget.

This Budget makes $43 billion of savings over the forward estimates.

Policy decisions made in this Budget will deliver the greatest improvement to the budget position in nearly two decades.

Making room for our priorities

This Budget builds on the Government's record of identifying enduring savings.

To put this into perspective, the budget bottom line would be around $18 billion lower this year without the long term savings identified since 2008‑09, with a $76 billion shortfall in a decade's time.

These long term savings also underpin the long term sustainability of the budget position and ensure we have room to fund our priorities. These decisions mean that the budget is cumulatively better off by over $300 billion by 2020‑21.


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Improving the underlying cash balance following revenue write-downs and other variations