Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Speech to CEDA Feb 2011

It is nearly 10 years since I left the Australian Parliament and a lot has changed.

Having spent 6 years in London as a banker, I have had the opportunity to not only better understand Europe but also to better gauge Australia’s position in the world. Clearly in terms of economic performance, we have done much better than even we had hoped back in 1990 when John Hewson and I started writing Fightback. And some of the proposals we advocated then have materialised e.g. the GST which I first publicly advocated as part of my leadership campaign after the 1990 election. Over the time from when Hawke’s ALP was elected and then Howard, and generally in the first half of those 2 Governments, Australia had been pro-reform. Unlike the ALP, even when in opposition, the Coalition supported reform pursued by our political opponents.