WA Liberal leader Liza Harvey says today’s disastrous ABS job figures are further proof that Premier Mark McGowan has no COVID-19 recovery plan for Western Australia.
“Western Australia has record unemployment at 8.7 per cent, which is the second highest in the nation behind South Australia,” Ms Harvey said.
“These latest ABS statistics released today highlight the dire state of the West Australian economy.
“Western Australia’s unemployment rate is significantly higher than the national average of 7.4 per cent and is a shocking result when compared with other states such as New South Wales at 6.9 per cent and Victoria at 7.5 per cent.
“We have the highest number of unemployed in the history of Western Australia. In the last month alone, 11,800 West Australians lost their job. Today there are 124,000 West Australians out of work.
“This is a disaster and would be much worse if not for the Federal Government’s JobKeeper Scheme that has kept 67,000 West Australians in work.
“The unemployment rate in WA would be 13.4 per cent if not for the JobKeeper.
“Since February this year, 81,500 jobs have been lost – despite the Premier claiming that his Government is creating jobs.
“This jobs crisis just keeps getting worse in Western Australia under the McGowan Labor Government. The Premier needs to accept responsibility for these job losses and immediately tell the WA public – in particular the 124,000 people who are unemployed and the 153,000 people who are underemployed – what his jobs plan is.”
Ms Harvey said the McGowan Government had done nothing to create an environment that supported confidence in businesses to invest, grow and create local jobs.
“WA businesses are becoming increasingly pessimistic about the longer-term outlook with the CCI stating that 66 per cent expect to face significant headwinds over the next 12 months,” she said.
“The ABS has indicated that two thirds of businesses have reported a decrease in revenue compared to last year and almost one in three of those businesses have stated that revenue decreased by 50 per cent or more.
“The ABS also indicated that 30 per cent of small businesses have stated currently available cash on hand would only support their operations for less than three months. A further 19 per cent would not survive a further three months after that.”