Australia to Increase Defense and Security Spending on Next Budget

The Australian government to increase defense and national security expenditures while decreasing domestic spending, according to Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.

In the midst of Russia’s war with Ukraine and China’s military asserting itself, Frydenberg predicted “greater spending in defense and national security reflecting the difficulties that we currently face.

“The budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 was released ahead of federal elections on May 21, in which Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s conservative administration would seek re-election for a fourth three-year term.

With higher oil prices driving up inflation in Australia and overseas, the government is poised to lower its 44.2 Australian cents (33 US cent) per liter ($1.25 per gallon) fuel tax.

“Tonight in a temporary, in a targeted, in a responsible way, we will provide cost of living relief,” said Frydenberg.

Economists estimate a deficit of 70 billion to 80 billion Australian dollars ($52 billion to $60 billion) for the current fiscal year, down from the government’s prediction of a shortfall of 99.2 billion Australian dollars ($74.3 billion) in December.

Frydenberg also said he would also reveal a “material improvement to the budget bottom line.”

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