The myth of high Australian labour costs.

There is a myth being perpetrated by the Abbott government that the Australian labour force is expensive and incompetent. This is a slur on Australia and a lie to cover Abbott’s twisted economic policy to give multinational companies the cheapest possible cost so they can screw Australian Workers.

The major problem with Australian labour costs is dumping. Dumping is when a company produces at the level that gives the lowest cost and maximises prices. When the lowest cost gives production units that is higher than the level needed to maximise profit the extra units are ‘dumped’ at cost on any country that has low levels of protection. When Abbott says Australia is open to business he means that Australia is open to anyone who wants to dump their excess production and in the process distort the relative costs of Australian labour. The cost of imported goods in Australia in many cases bears no relationship of the actual costs of production. This makes it impossible for say the Australian car industry compete with imported vehicles that are selling at thousands of dollars below their true price.

Protectionism is a dirty word according to Abbott and his economic minnows. Having tariffs that raise the cost of imported goods to the level of their true value is not protectionism; it is creating a level playing field. A system of tariffs that protects against dumping but goes not create not inhibit true competition would be flexible across industries and flexible over time would require a sensitive touch that is difficult to achieve, but the benefits would be a true indication of the cost of Australian labour and I would be surprised if we were to be found to be non-competitive.

There is another aspect to the argument. If Australia is to be competitive in a modern world Australians will need to get used to the idea that they will pay the true price of imported goods. Australians cannot have it both ways. We either have a vibrant economy or cheap imports. We cannot have both.

2 thoughts on “The myth of high Australian labour costs.

  1. Very true Yosef, and you’re spot on in regards to Abbott’s plan to undercut minimum wages for Australian workers, and when there are no more tariffs and no more manufacturing then Australia will be solely reliant on imports – in short, a third world country thanks to the NLP and their warped ideology of ‘market forces’.

    • Hi Edward.

      I am tired of hearing how overpaid and underworked we are. We have to create equality in the market place before we can find out just how competitive we are.

      Historically of course Australia was created as a food bowl for England and we were to be paid in English manufactured goods. That attitude still persists. We are supposed to be subservient farming hicks, not a country that can look after itself. Abbotts attitudes have a lot to do with outdated colonial attitudes that define us as second class hicks. Unfortunately the election of the Abbott government tends to support that hypothesis.

      Keep well


      On 14-02-14 4:59 PM, “Young Canadian Voice – Hopeful?” wrote:


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