Monday, 20 October 2008
Questions without Notice
I thank the member for Brisbane for his question. We are experiencing one of the most significant upheavals in financial markets since the Great Depression. The global financial crisis is affecting financial markets right around the world, including in Australia. More than 25 banks around the world have failed or have been bailed out, and global stock markets have seen very significant losses. This crisis is contributing to a serious slowdown in global growth. Obviously these difficulties will impact here. Growth will slow and unemployment will rise. We have been upfront about that from the very beginning.
It pays to remind ourselves what the IMF had to say only a week or so ago:
The world economy is entering a major downturn in the face of the most dangerous financial shock in mature financial markets since the 1930s … The major advanced economies are already in or close to recession …
This is not my assessment. It is the assessment of the IMF and it is also the assessment of finance ministers of the G7 and the G20, but of course the Leader of the Opposition says they have got it all wrong. Yesterday on Insiders, he said this assessment was ‘hyped up’.