5 June 2019
Transcript - #2019080, 2019

Interview with David Koch, Sunrise, Channel 7

Subject: RBA interest rate decision.

DAVID KOCH:

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg joins us now from Canberra, Treasurer good morning to you.

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

Good morning Kochie.

DAVID KOCH:

What do you say to the ANZ and Westpac who have really been stingy about this and are holding back some stuff for themselves?

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

Well we're deeply disappointed in these decisions from the ANZ and Westpac and so should their customers be because there is a legitimate expectation that when the RBA cuts rates as it has done for the first time in almost three years that it's passed on in full and we heard from the Reserve Bank Governor himself yesterday depart from usual practice and call on the banks to pass on this interest rate cut in full and so therefore we welcome what NAB and the Commonwealth Bank have done but are disappointed in the announcements from the ANZ and Westpac.

DAVID KOCH:

The Opposition says the interest rate cut is evidence the economy is in trouble, it's floundering? Is it in trouble?

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

No it's not, the fundamentals of the economy are sound and we saw that in the statement from the Reserve Bank Governor yesterday. He said that there has been strong employment growth and we know that over the last year more than 320,000 new jobs have been created, eight out of ten new jobs have been full time but we have seen escalating trade tensions globally between China and the US and that affects the global economic outlook. But the Governor was very specific in saying there hasn't been a deterioration in the economic outlook, but there is a belief that unemployment can come down further and the interest rate cut is designed to do that.

DAVID KOCH:

Yeah, and talking about trade, while there are tensions, blimey our exports are going gangbusters, the biggest trade surplus since 1973.

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

Well this is good news for our exporters. It's largely a function of the rising prices, particularly for commodities and particularly iron ore and that is helping to boost the trade surplus. But we as a government have put a great focus on opening new trade opportunities for our businesses, with free trade agreements Kochie, most recently with Indonesia but also with China, Japan and Korea.

DAVID KOCH:

Yeah, but, that's good news for your budget surplus too isn't it? Higher iron ore prices, bigger taxes, perfect.

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

Well, we were pretty conservative in the Budget with our iron or forecast…

DAVID KOCH:

Yeah you sure were…

JOSH FRYDENBERG:

But, yeah, that's how it is.

DAVID KOCH:

Alright, okay mate, thank you very much for that.