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Tax cuts and power bill relief: what we know about Budget 2019

federal budget what we know so far

With just hours until Treasurer Josh Frydenberg unveils the 2019 Federal Budget, here’s what we know so far

Budget big picture

  • Overall theme: ‘A stronger economy and a secure future’
  • Federal election is due in mid-May
  • Better than expected surplus for 2019/20 (MYEFO: $4.1 billion in 2019/20)
  • 3 per cent growth for 2019/20 (MYEFO forecast)
  • 5 per cent unemployment rate for 2019/20 (MYEFO forecast)
  • Migration cap to be reduced to 160,000 from 190,000
  • 1.25 million new jobs to be created over the next five years
  • Expectation of a ‘stimulus’ worth about $6 billion, adding about 0.4 percentage points to GDP


  • Likely bring-forward of the July 2022 income tax cuts, on top of those already starting 1 July this year, as part of an already-legislated $144 billion plan
  • Possible improvements to tax offsets for low-income earners
  • Rules around $69 billion GST revenue distribution to the states have changed, with Western Australia the main beneficiary
  • Instant asset write-off extended to June 2020 and increased from $20,000 to $25,000
  • Allows small business with an annual turnover of less than $10 million to deduct the cost of assets such as cars and equipment
  • Tax office and other agencies to crack down on welfare cheats and tax dodging

Roads and rail

  • $75 billion infrastructure plan over 10 years continues
  • $2.2 billion road safety plan including black spot repair and new national office of road safety

Financial services

  • $600 million boost for financial regulators ASIC and APRA to deal with banking royal commission fallout
  • $35 million to expand the jurisdiction of the Federal Court of Australia to include corporate and financial sector criminal misconduct


  • $2 billion for Emissions Reduction Fund, now called the Climate Solutions Fund
  • $1.4 billion for Snowy Hydro 2.0


  • $285 million to help almost four million Australian pensioners and others cover their energy bills

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