Minister for Resources Jaclyn Symes, in facing the Public Accounts & Estimates Committee (PAEC) has failed to confirm there will be any support to the gold mining and other sectors who are being hit hard by Labor’s reckless and are facing the prospect of imminent job losses.
Worryingly, the Minister required departmental officials to answer a number of questions put to her, showing a lack of basic understanding of the important issues in her portfolio.
It was revealed that the Minister’s Departmental Secretary was only made aware of Labor’s draconian new gold tax on Budget Day. It’s clear that the Minister was kept in the dark by the Treasurer about the introduction of this irresponsible new tax that threatens the viability of gold mining in Victoria.
The Minister further confirmed that there had been no consultation with the sector and was unable to show any understanding of the negative impact this new gold tax would have on Victorian miners. Bizarrely, the Minister then claimed she would consult with the sector now that the decision has been made.
In a worrying development for households bending under the weight of energy bills, the Minister refused to offer any relief to these escalating cost of living pressures. Instead, Ms Symes is steadfastly clinging to Labor’s damaging policy to prolong the gas exploration moratorium in the face of these ever-growing gas prices.
With the cost of Labor’s infrastructure agenda blowing out, the Minister has ignored the impact Labor’s agonisingly slow approvals process has had on the extractive industries sector. As a result, the subsequent dwindling supplies have significantly added to the already bloated costs the Victorian taxpayer has to wear.
Victorians deserve better than a Resources Minster who is asleep at the wheel while the sector she is responsible for is being gouged with new taxes to prop up Labor’s budget.
Ryan Smith MP
Shadow Minister for Resources