Was it really the mining boom that saved Australia?

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It has almost become lore in Australia that the mining boom saved the country. It is almost as if the nation has to believe it is ‘lucky’ rather than celebrate some good planning. I included the following in a number of my speeches in 2010 and 2011.

Did the mining boom save Australia?

Australia likes to say it escaped the Global Financial Crisis because of the ‘luck’ of the mining boom and the mining sector. 

This is too simplistic, but Australia prefers to say “lucky”, rather than ‘good management”.

Why cannot Australia recognise that in escaping the global financial crisis Australia is seeing the culmination of three decades of very good policy across all political parties? 

Factors impacting on our escapes from the GFC included:

·                   a combination of a flexible exchange rate (thanks to Hawke and Keating),
·                   a flexible labour market (thanks to Howard and Costello),
·                   the psychological impact of a well timed (perhaps not well implemented) stimulus package,
·                   a strong and well regulated banking sector that has not collapsed (few in Australia would look to our four banks as saviours?) and,
·                   yes in part, the mining sector.

Whilst we are lucky with our resources, the other factors were a result of good planning. 

Why doesn’t Australia celebrate this? Is this the tall poppy syndrome again? see my blog on the ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’ and its dangers to Australia: Tall Poppy Blog

More discussion like this is in: 


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