With Russia at war with Ukraine and China’s military becoming more assertive, Frydenberg foreshadowed “further investments in defense and national security reflecting the challenges that we now face.”
With inflation increasing in Australia and many parts of the world driven in part by higher oil prices, the government is expected to reduce its 44.2 Australian cents (33.1 U.S. cents) a liter ($1.25 a gallon) tax on gasoline.
“Tonight in a temporary, in a targeted, in a responsible way, we will provide cost of living relief,” Frydenberg said.
The Australian Institute for Petroleum said the national gasoline price average fell 5.8 AU cents (4.3 cents) last week to AU$2.06.7 ($1.54) per liter ($5.86 per gallon).
Frydenberg said he would also reveal a “material improvement to the budget bottom line.”
Economists are expecting a deficit of between AU$80 billion ($60 billion) and AU$70 billion ($52 billion) for the current fiscal year compared with the AU$99.2 billion ($74.3 billion) shortfall predicted by the government in December.