Australian government promises tough first budget
Share this on

Australian government promises tough first budget

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has promised to share the pain in his conservative government’s first annual budget aimed at reducing the national debt.

His government’s financial blueprint for the next fiscal year beginning on July 1 will be revealed to Parliament on Tuesday. It is likely to be politically damaging since his coalition was elected in September on a pledge not to increase taxes.

Abbott confirmed on Sydney radio 2GB on Tuesday that a gasoline tax that had been frozen at 38.1 Australian cents (U.S. 35.7 cents) per liter since 2001 will again increase with inflation.

Abbott also confirmed that a debt levy will be paid by higher income earners to retire national debt and that government subsidies for university education fees would be reduced.