Federal Budget improves Victoria’s share of national infrastructure spend

The Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has welcomed the investment in Victorian infrastructure in the 2018-19 Federal Budget.

Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Mark Stone AM said the budget builds on the strong outcomes for Victorian business delivered in last week’s Victorian budget.

“Importantly, the federal budget demonstrates responsible economic management with a projected return to surplus in 2019-20.”

Mr Stone said the $7.8 billion investment in Victorian road and rail infrastructure helps to lift Victoria’s share of federal infrastructure funding.

Key infrastructure announcements welcomed by the Victorian Chamber include:

  • $5 billion for a Melbourne Airport rail link
  • $1.75 billion for the North-East link
  • $475 million for a rail connection to the Monash employment precinct
  • $225 million for Frankston to Baxter line electrification
  • $140 million for urban congestion reduction projects
  • $132 million for the Princes Highway duplication from Traralgon to Sale
  • $50 million for the duplication of the Geelong Rail Line between South Geelong and Waurn Ponds
  • $20 million funding boost for expansion of Avalon Airport.

“Also welcome is the reaffirmed commitment of $3 billion towards the East West Link.”

Small business will benefit from the extension of the $20,000 instant asset write-off for a further 12 months. Small business export opportunities will also be enhanced through the $20 million SME Export Hubs program.

“All businesses will benefit from the recommitment to cutting the company tax rate to 25 per cent over a ten-year period. The personal income tax cuts for lower income earners will address cost of living pressures and inject additional spending into the economy.

“Agribusiness will benefit from funding to improve GPS technologies, water infrastructure, biosecurity and international trade,” Mr Stone said.

However, while Victorian business will benefit from the infrastructure and pro-business measures in the Federal Budget, cuts to the research and development tax incentive will slow down business innovation and investment in Victoria.