Australia’s Final Budget Outcome for 2019-20 has been released.

In 2019-20, the Australian Government general government sector recorded an underlying cash deficit of $85.3 billion (4.3 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP)). This is a $0.5 billion improvement compared to the Economic and Fiscal update in July, but a $90.3 billion deterioration since the 2019-20 MYEFO.

The net operating balance was in deficit by $92.3 billion.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg argued the Final Budget Outcome shows Australia’s budget is in a much stronger position than many other comparable nations despite the significant health and economic challenges from COVID-19.

‘The decisions we made prior to this crisis have improved our budget position by more than $250 billion,’ said Mr Frydenberg in a press release with Finance Minister Mathias Cornmann.

‘This put us on a better, more sustainable fiscal trajectory for the future before we went into this crisis. If we had not done that, we would have had less fiscal capacity to respond and our economy would have been less resilient.’

Total cash payments were $57.7 billion higher than the 2019-20 MYEFO estimate, as Government supports like JobKeeper, the Coronavirus Supplement, the CashFlow boost and other economic support payments were made to Australians.

While payments increased as a result of COVID-19, total receipts were $33.1 billion lower than estimated at the 2019-20 MYEFO as economic activity across the world and Australia slowed.

General government net debt was $491.2 billion (24.8 percent of GDP) which was $98.9 billion higher than estimated at the time of the 2019-20 MYEFO.

The Government will release the next installment of its economic plan to help rebuild Australia’s economy and to get people back to work in the 2020-21 Budget on 6 October 2020.

The 2019-20 Final Budget Outcome document can be found on the Budget website.

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