Josh Frydenberg says Australians ‘have to live with the pandemic’
Frydenberg says Australia will experience a second wave.
We certainly have to live with the pandemic and that is going to mean a second wave of cases. It is going to mean spikes from time to time and it’s how we effectively manage those spikes that will determine the speed of our economic recovery.
There will be an update on Australia’s overall unemployment forecast on 23 July. As mentioned the official rate is now 7.1 and effective rate is 13.3. It is expected to rise.
Frydenberg said he does not want to “dull any of the incentives to move between jobs” for people who are on jobseeker.
RN Breakfast host Frank Kelly points out that there are not many jobs to move between.
Josh Frydenberg says the lockdown in Victoria is “a setback” to Australia’s economic development. Which, yes.
He has been on Radio National talking about the coronavirus support payment. He says the first payment was spent by those aged over 65, but a third of those under 65 banked it. But he says:
The best economic support one can provide is to get the health consequences of this under control.
Frydenberg says Australia is “better placed than any other country in the world” to recover from the virus. He is defending against the criticism of business groups who say the stop-start response to the virus – opening up then locking down again – is hampering the economic recovery.
Australia’s unemployment rate is currently 7.1%, but Frydenberg says the effective unemployment rate is closer to 13.3%.
New unemployment figures come out on Thursday.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has confirmed this morning that the Australian government will not offer a third coronavirus support payment. The second $750 payment will be automatically issued from today to people who are on an eligible pension or concession card, and are not already receiving the $550 fortnightly coronavirus payment. For example, people on the disability support payment and Family Tax Benefit A or B. Some who got the first payment will not be eligible for the second one.
Frydenberg was also asked, on ABC News Breakfast, what message he thought prime minister Scott Morrison was giving Australians by attending a football match this weekend. He said:
Well, again, that reflected the fact that New South Wales and Victoria are different stages. Good on him for being passionate about his country and about his footy. I’d love to go to watch the Storm on the Carlton football club. The reality is in New South Wales and Queensland you can go and watch the footy. It reflects the reality we’re in. I note even the opposition leader didn’t criticise the prime minister for doing that.
There are now nine cases connected to an outbreak at the Crossroads Hotel in Casula in south-west Sydney, including an 18-year-old bartender. Anyone who patronised the pub from 3 July to 10 July has been asked to self-isolate – that could be thousands of people.
Seven News is reporting that two people from the RAAF base in Wagga Wagga were among the pub attendees. They say that base has now been shut down.
Victoria recorded 273 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, and the death of a man in his 70s. Some 237 cases are now linked to public housing blocks in Flemington and North Melbourne, and 28 people tested positive in public housing blocks in Carlton after residents lobbied for mobile testing.
In a very worrying development, a guard at the Mantra Hotel where asylum seekers are held while they await necessary medical treatment has also tested positive.
It’s the first day of term three today in Victoria, but not for everyone. Students outside of the lockdown in greater Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire, as well as year 11 and 12 students and students who attend specialist schools within the lockdown area, will be back today. But students from prep to year 10 within the lockdown area have the next week off, and will return to remote learning next Monday.
Meanwhile, people living in the Melbourne and Mitchell Shire lockdown area have begun wearing masks in public. From my own investigation (I went to the shops, also masked), mask uptake has been fairly high. I sewed this mask on the weekend, it’s very fashion.
Let’s get on with the day. You can follow me on Twitter @callapilla or email me at email@example.com.