A Letter from the Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg

February 3, 2022

Dear Tina

Today’s National Accounts were released against the backdrop of devastating floods at home and violent conflict abroad. 

Our deepest condolences go to those families who have lost loved ones in the floods and many others who have experienced extensive damage to their homes and businesses.

Our prayers are with 44 million Ukrainians who are bravely defending their nation against the unjust and unprovoked invasion of Russia.

Both the floods and developments in Ukraine will impact our economy.

However, today’s National Accounts demonstrate the strength and resilience of our economy in the face of the biggest economic shock since the Great Depression.

In the December quarter, Australia’s economy grew by 3.4%. This is the equal strongest quarterly growth in 46 years.

Australia’s economy is now larger than it was going into the pandemic. Australia is outperforming all major advanced economies including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, France, Italy and Japan. We have one of the highest vaccination rates in the world, the lowest mortality rates in the world and one of the strongest economic recoveries in the world.

This is no accident. It is a testament to 26 million Australians and an economic plan that is working. This is in contrast to the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Germany and Italy, where employment is still well below pre-pandemic levels. 

Here in Australia, there are more Australians at work today than before the pandemic with a record 375,000 jobs created in the quarter. Unemployment fell from 5.2% in October to 4.2% per cent in December – a 13 year low.

As recent events at home and abroad demonstrate, the Australian economy will continue to be tested. 

However, today’s National Accounts show if we stick to our economic plan, Australians can be optimistic about a strong economy and a stronger future.   

Regards

Josh Frydenberg

Treasurer