Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Crisis? What Crisis? Australia After(?) the Global Crisis

Here is a link to a paper I delivered at a Symposium: Political Leadership and Economic Crisis, which ran from 13-15 February at Luce Hall, Yale University.

The abstract is:

The global economic crisis is not over for Australia. Instead, its effects have been delayed rather than avoided. China’s economic stimulus delayed the impact of the crisis, but as Chinese economy rebalances and its growth slows, Australian policy-makers will have to deal with a series of structural economic vulnerabilities exacerbated by the resources boom. These vulnerabilities include declining demand for resources and high levels of private debt. Australian policy-makers – both political and bureaucratic – maintain through their words and actions that Australia will continue to benefit from Chinese and Asian growth well into the future and that the economy will transition away from the mining boom with few policy innovations required apart from fiscal rectitude. Policy-makers do not view Australia’s growing China dependence as a problem. The paper argues that Australia’s ‘modified’ economic liberal policy framework aims to reinforce Australia’s current economic ‘strengths’ and neglects the significance of economic vulnerabilities and the need for a more diverse economic structure. The embrace of economic liberalism is not total, as many commentators note, but the policy framework enables policy-makers to reject policy activism and justify smaller government.

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