Australia looks to revamp markets, institutions

Changes afoot: A bulk carrier is seen docked at a grain terminal in Newcastle, New South Wales. Australia is on a path to redefine and reform its economy and institutions, according to Treasurer Jim Chalmers. — Bloomberg

SYDNEY: Treasurer Jim Chalmers has pledged to deliver “values-based capitalism” in Australia by revamping markets, renovating institutions and urging the private sector to co-invest with the government as the global economy confronts an inflation crisis.

“Australia can do more and do better than just batten down the hatches in 2023 or hope for the best,” Chalmers wrote in a 6,000-word essay that will be published in Australian magazine The Monthly soon.

“We can build something better, more meaningful and more inclusive.”

In the article, Chalmers, who took office in May after Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s Labor Party took power, criticised the neoliberal approach of the previous government and promised to “redefine and reform our economy and institutions”.

“We will renovate the Reserve Bank, responding to the Reserve Bank of Australia Review,” Chalmers wrote, saying the Productivity Commission would be turned into a think tank to advise the government.

Chalmers said the way markets allocated and arranged capital also needed restructuring.

“Government has a leadership role to play,” he wrote.

“Defining priorities, challenges and missions – not ‘picking winners’.

“This is critical to guide how we design markets, facilitate flows of capital into priority areas.”

The treasurer said co-investment with businesses was a “powerful tool,” and the government would look to employ it in the industry, housing and electricity sectors.

It had been reported that the government’s post-pandemic recovery plan in October 2020 included welcome elements to streamline and digitise a range of regulatory procedures and improve framework conditions for businesses.

The recovery plan also proposed to automatically recognise occupational licences across jurisdictions to enhance labour mobility.

Boosting direct business research and development (R&D) funding and ensuring measures to induce additional private R&D investment to elevate long-term potential growth was also a priority. — Bloomberg

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Australia , Chalmers , markets , revamp , RBA , R&D


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